What financial assistance is available for child care?

Child care can be very expensive and costs vary depending on where you live, and the type of care provided. Infants are generally more expensive than older children and sometimes there is a discount for siblings.

You can contact 2-1-1 to learn about local child care services and financial assistance available to you where you live. If you cannot afford these costs you can apply for assistance through your municipal government subsidy programs. You must meet certain criteria to be eligible for fee subsidy and to maintain that subsidy.

Childcare Fee Subsidies

There is generally a waiting list in most regions for support. You can often apply well in advance of when you will require assistance. You can usually apply for a fee subsidy as soon as you know you are pregnant or expecting a child through adoption. Contact your local municipality for more information about child care subsidies, the application process and waiting list times.

National Benefits

The federal government offers many families the Canada Child Benefit (CCB). The CCB is a tax-free monthly payment that helps eligible families with the cost of raising children under the age of 18.&

You can apply for the Canada Child Benefit:

Ontario Benefits

You may also be eligible for the Ontario Child Benefit. If you have registered for the Canada Child Benefit, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will determine whether you are eligible for this benefit when you file a tax return. Eligible families will receive the Ontario Child Benefit and the Canada Child Benefit as a combined monthly payment from the CRA.

Children with Special Needs

Children with special needs, as defined in the Child Care and Early Years Act (CCEYA) may need individual attention and activities or special devices, toys and equipment that meet their personal needs.

According to the province of Ontario, Special Needs Resourcing (SNR) helps support the inclusion of children with special needs in licensed child care settings, where in-home services are provided, where child and family programs are provided such as EarlyON Child and Family Centres, children's recreation programs, and camps at no additional cost to parents.

School boards are responsible for providing support to allow children with special needs to fully participate in board-operated before-and after-school programs.

For More Information

  • Financial Support for Child Care - Information on government subsidies and grants for families in Ontario. From the Ministry of Education.
  • Canada Child Benefits Application - The application form for the CCB, including an explanation of the application process and requirements. From Canada Revenue Agency.
  • Having a Baby - Information for benefits and information for new parents. From Service Canada.
  • Municipalities in Ontario - A listing of the websites and contact information for municipalities in Ontario. Each municipality has information about childcare subsidies.
Last updated: August 11, 2022 4006024