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Resource Guide

Funding & Accessibility Services You Need to Know About!

August 19th, 2021

AutismBC

For Caregivers, Autistic Adults

Explore a selection of funding and accessibility services that we believe are vital for you to be acquainted with. These organizations provide financial discounts, grants, complimentary services, or reduced fees to individuals and families, ensuring greater accessibility and support.

Health  

Angel Flight

Provides free air transport for cancer patients whose medical conditions make it difficult or impossible for them to travel by conventional means, to and from hospitals, clinics, doctor’s offices and other medical facilities on the lower mainland and points on Vancouver Island. For more information, call 250 818-0288.

BC Family Residence Program   

“The BC Family Residence Program provides accommodation assistance to enable families to stay together when their child requires medical care at BC Children’s Hospital or Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children.” (Government of BC, n.d.) 

BC Ferry Services, Inc.

Full discount for patient, escort (if approved by referring physician) and regular passenger car fare (those traveling in over height and extra length vehicles, including recreational vehicles and trailers, are required to pay the difference between regular and assessed fare for their vehicle). Travel Assistance Program (TAP BC) – Province of British Columbia (gov.bc.ca) For TAP patients travelling on BC Ferries, please note that patients must return to their home community via the same BC Ferries route that they used to attend the specialist appointment or specialty medical service. It is the patient’s responsibility to make their own travel and accommodation arrangements.

We offer 50% off passenger fares with a BC Ferries Accessible Fare Identification (AFI) card or a CNIB card. You can present your AFI or CNIB card to the ticket agent when you arrive at the terminal to receive your discount. Accessible Fare Information: Accessibility | BC Ferries

BCNPHA

Has initiated a partnership with a key Canadian manufacturer of quality beds and mattresses whereby BCNPHA members will be able to products at exclusive preferential prices. Restwell Sleep Products offers a wide range of products for all needs and budgets and works with a number of non-profit housing providers and care homes throughout the province. BCNPHA has initiated a partnership with a key Canadian manufacturer of quality beds and mattresses whereby BCNPHA members will be able to products at exclusive preferential prices. 

Central Mountain Air Ltd.

Regular fare discounted and some flight restrictions waived for approved Travel Assistance Program recipients. CMA serves the following communities: Campbell River, Comox, Dawson Creek, Fort St. John, Fort Nelson, Kamloops, Kelowna, Prince George, Quesnel, Smithers, Terrace, Vancouver and Williams Lake. For more information, call 1 888 865-8585.

Ceridian Cares | Evaluation Criteria

Grants program for Canadians who qualify to cover the cost of Clothing & Footwear, Food & Basic Household Needs, Medical Devices & Therapies, Personal Development & Recreation. Funding Program – www.mattressonline.ca – Mattressonline can help low-income individuals/Families, sick or disabled people, and also low-income seniors to work through the process for funding options with Ceridian Cares Canada. 

Provincial Health Services Authority – Provincial Language Services 

Provincial Language Services supports organizations providing services to their linguistically and culturally diverse clients, including immigrants, refugees, official minority language speakers and members of the Deaf, Deaf-Blind, and Hard of Hearing community through addressing language and communication access issues and barriers.” (Provincial Health Services Authority, 2022)

Northern Health Virtual Clinic 

The Northern Health Virtual Primary and Community Care Clinic provides services by phone or through a video call. The COVID-19 Online Clinic name has changed, and is now the Northern Health Virtual Primary and Community Care Clinic. 

Cops for Kids  

Cops for Kids is a charitable foundation that is committed to assisting children that have suffered a medical, physical or traumatic crisis in their young lives. We tirelessly work to raise funds to continue our ongoing support to the children in the communities that we serve. (Cops for Kids, 2022)  

CKNW Kids’ Fund  

“Aims to enhance the lives of children living with physical, mental, social, and behavioural challenges in BC communities. (CKNW Kids’ Fund, 2021)  

Fair PharmaCare   

Fair PharmaCare helps B.C. families pay for eligible prescription drugs, dispensing fees and some medical supplies. Fair PharmaCare is based on income: the less a family earns, the more help they get. (Government of BC, n.d.) 

First Nations Health Authority Benefits   

“First Nations Health Benefits Program provides status First Nations people living in BC with a comprehensive and community-driven health benefits plan.” (First Nations Health Authority, 2022) 

Harbour Air Seaplanes

30 percent discount on regular economy fares on any scheduled services for approved Travel Assistance Program recipients. For more information, call 1-800-665-0212.

Healthy Kids BC   

“The Healthy Kids Program provides coverage for basic dental treatment, optical care, and hearing assistance to children in low-income families that are not receiving income, disability, or hardship assistance.” (Government of BC, n.d.)   

Hope Air  

“Providing free travel and accommodations for Canadians in financial need who must access medical care far from home.” (Hope Air, 2022)  

Travel Assistance Program (TAP)  

The Travel Assistance Program (TAP) helps alleviate some of the transportation costs for eligible B.C. residents who must travel within the province for non-emergency medical specialist services not available in their own community. (Government of BC, n.d.)  

Variety The Children’s Charity   (Private Autism, Assessment Grant Applications, are temporarily closed for age 5+ – Apr 2023)

“Provides direct care for children with funding for medical care and services, mobility and communication equipment, therapies (including equine and music), autism assessments, psychoeducational assessments and education.” (Variety The Children’s Charity, 2022). 

CAYA BC

Communication Assistance for Youth and Adults is a province-wide service program that supports adults aged 19 years and older who require an augmentative/alternative communication (AAC) system. 

Canada Dental Benefit

You may be eligible to apply for the new Canadian Dental Care Plan. If you are over 70 years old, you may receive a letter by March 2024 with instructions on how to apply. If you are between 65 and 69, you can apply online starting in May 2024. Adults with a valid Disability Tax Credit certificate and children under 18 can apply starting in June 2024. The interim Canada Dental Benefit is intended to help lower dental costs for eligible families earning less than $90,000 per year. Parents and guardians may be eligible if they pay for dental care for a child under 12 years old who does not have access to a private dental insurance plan.

Indigenous 

Jordan’s Principle   

Jordan’s Principle makes sure all First Nations children living in Canada can access the products, services and supports they need, when they need them. Funding can help with a wide range of health, social and educational needs, including the unique needs that First Nations Two-Spirit and LGBTQQIA children and youth and those with disabilities may have.” (Government of Canada, 2022) 

Inuit Child First Initiative 

The Inuit Child First Initiative ensures Inuit children have access to the essential government-funded health, social and educational products, services and supports they need, when they need them.” (Government of Canada, 2022) 

Indigneous Disability Canada’s Support for Indigenous Student Learning Program (SISLP)  

Indigenous Disability Canada’s Support for Indigenous Student Learning Program (SISLP) is a time-limited project for Indigenous students across Canada who have limited financial resources, including those students living with disabilities. The SISLP is accepting applications from students of any age enrolled in a Formal educational institution (either online, remote, or through on-site learning) to be considered to receive a laptop and other technology / equipment supports necessary to assist with their continued education and success. Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis until March 15th, 2023. Applications must be received by BCANDS no later than March 15th, 2023 to be consideration.” (BCANDS, 2022) 

Indspire – Building Brighter Futures

Bursaries, Scholarships, and Awards that open doors through education for First Nations, Inuit and Métis students

First Nations Health Authority Benefits   

“First Nations Health Benefits Program provides status First Nations people living in BC with a comprehensive and community-driven health benefits plan.” (First Nations Health Authority, 2022) 

Unique Get Together Society (Vancouver & Chilliwack)  

Indigenous-focused special needs programs and therapies, respite care programs, social programs and camps.   

Metis Nation BC 

MNBC’s mandate is to develop and enhance opportunities for Métis communities by implementing culturally relevant social and economic programs and services.” (Metis Nation BC, 2022)

Wellbeing program

Métis Nation British Columbia (mnbc.ca)

  • Through the Miyoopimatishihk (Wellbeing) Program, families can apply for financial support to assist in the cost of a wide range of services, programs and products, including but not limited to: respite care, speech therapy, assessments, specialized equipment, mental health supports 

Community Accessibility   

Access2Card   

“Easter Seals Canada offers the Access 2 Card for people of all ages and types of permanent disabilities who require the assistance of a support person at hundreds of participating entertainment, cultural and recreational venues across Canada.” (Easter Seals Canada, 2022)  

Athletics 4 Kids  

“Ensuring all BC children, regardless of socioeconomic status, can participate in organized sport by providing families with financial assistance.” (Athletics For Kids, 2019)  

BC Bus Pass Program   

“Low-income seniors and Persons with Disabilities (PWD) have access to the BC Bus Pass Program. The pass is valid in communities served by BC Transit or Translink.” (Government of BC, n.d.)  

BC Ferries Accessible Fare Identification (AFI) Card  

“Discounted fares are available for residents of British Columbia who have a permanent disability. To receive the discounted fares, you must apply for a BC Ferries’ Accessible Fare Identification Card and present your card to the Ticket Agent when you arrive at the terminal.” (BC Ferries, 2020)  

Deal Hack – Canadian Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Discount Guide – The Ultimate List  

Distance Computer Comfort Program – Neil Squire
Free tutoring for persons with disabilities to learn how to use your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone. Offered through a virtual classroom.
For more information: Distance-Computer-Comfort-Participant-Flatsheet

Easter Seals Disability Travel Card   

“For people of all types of permanent disabilities who require the assistance of a support person when travelling with VIA Rail Canada, Coach Canada, and Ontario Northland. When a cardholder presents the Disability Travel Card when purchasing a ticket for travel with one of our participating partners, one support person can accompany them at a reduced fare. The Disability Travel Card holder pays regular ticket price.” (Easter Seals Canada, n.d.) 

Federation of BC Youth In Care Networks

The Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks (FBCYICN, or the Fed) is a youth-driven, peer-based, provincial non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of young people in and from care in BC between the ages of 14 and 24.” (Federation of BC Youth In Care Networks, 2017)

HandyDART & HandyCard  

“HandyDART is TransLink’s door-to-door, shared-ride service for people who are unable to navigate conventional public transit without assistance.” (TransLink, n.d.)    

Hebrew Free Loan 

We provide access to affordable credit in the form of a 0% interest loan so that our borrowers can overcome financial challenges and build better lives  

Jumpstart Charities (Canadian Tire)  

Founded in 2005, Jumpstart helps kids overcome financial and accessibility barriers to sport and recreation in an effort to provide inclusive play for kids of all abilities.” (Jumpstart Charities, 2022)  

Kid Sport Canada

“The reality is that cost keeps 1 in 3 Canadian kids out of organized sport. KidSport provides grants to help cover those costs to ensure that no kid is ever left watching from the sidelines.” (Kid Sport Canada, 2020)  

netClé

NetClé enables people with physical disabilities to use the computer independently by serving as an alternative to standard inputs like a keyboard and mouse
– Currently distributing netClé for free

Northern Health Connections  

“To be eligible for the NH Connections program, patients must have a valid BC Care Card, not require care from a health professional (physician or nurse) during their trip and need to access a health service that’s not available in their home community” (Northern Health, 2022). 

SPARC BC   

Since 1984, SPARC BC has managed B.C.’s Parking Permit Program for People with Disabilities. Apply for or renew your permit to use designated parking spots anywhere in B.C.” (SPARC BC, 2022)   

Telus Internet for Good  

“Internet for Good helps by offering low-cost internet connectivity to Canadians who receive the British Columbia Persons with Disability (PWD) benefit or the Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefit (CPPD).” (Telus, 2022 

Telus Tech for Good  

“The Tech for Good program supports people with disabilities who require professional assistance to independently use or control their mobile device. The program is primarily educational in nature and provides customized training and support to help improve your quality of life, independence and personal empowerment. (Telus, 2022)  

– Offered in BC and Alberta to provide eligible Canadians with the internet they need to succeed
– $9.95/month for 24 month
– Available to PWD or AISH recipients and is extended directly to families in need
https://www.telus.com/en/about/company-overview/community-investment/how-we-give/cause-campaigns/internet-for-good

VIA Rail Canada   

We offer an environment where everyone can travel autonomously and confidently. To ensure the greatest ease and comfort of travel, we also provide special assistance services.” Includes Travelling with a Support Person Information and Eligibility.  (VIA Rail Canada, 2022). 30 per cent discount available for approved Travel Assistance Program recipients. Tickets can be obtained at VIA ticket offices in Vancouver, Prince George and Prince Rupert. B.C. residents outside these areas should call 1 888 842-7245 to arrange advance ticketing. Please refer to discount PR6145 when making a reservation.

  

Region Specific  

Vancouver Coastal & Fraser Regions  

Mamas for Mamas (Vancouver & Kelowna) 

Mamas for Mamas is a national charitable organization that supports mothers and caregivers in crisis by providing ongoing support to individuals and families facing various poverty-related struggles.” (Mamas for Mamas, 2021)  

Taking Strides (Vancouver & Alberta) 

Taking Strides is a non-profit initiative which was created by students at the University of Calgary in February of 2016. We offer adaptive physical literacy programs for children impacted by mental and physical disabilities. Our main priorities are to keep low fees for the parents, and to facilitate one-on-one child-volunteer pairing,” (Taking Strides, 2017)

Unique Get Together Society (Vancouver & Chilliwack) Indigenous-focused, special needs programs and therapies, respite care program, social programs and camps.   

Fraser Health: Affordable Dentistry Options for Children   

 Do you have information that should be listed here? Contact Us 

 

Vancouver Island  

BC Ferries Connector

Provides bus services between Victoria and Vancouver and will provide a 15-20 percent discount off the regular adult bus fare for TAP travellers on the BC Ferries Connector route operating between Victoria and Vancouver.  For more information, call 1 888 788-8840. 

Bear Essentials   

Bear Essentials is a family support program that assists with the costs of health-related travel and equipment for Island kids. The program is designed for families that struggle to afford the associated costs or that have barriers limiting their ability to access health care or equipment for their child.” (Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island, 2022) 

Camryn’s Cause for Kids Society   

“Camryn’s Cause provides financial assistance to Campbell River families when they have a child facing a health crisis.” (Camryn’s Cause for Kids Society, n.d)   

You Are Not Alone (Y.A.N.A)   

“YANA is a community organization that offers help to Comox Valley families who need to travel for medical treatment for a child or for a pregnant mother. They improve access to healthcare by providing travel funding and accommodation.” (You Are Not Alone (YANA), n.d.)

VI Connector

Provides bus service to the following communities on Vancouver Island:  Victoria, Duncan, Nanaimo, Parksville, Coombs, Port Alberni, Ucluelet, Tofino, Qualicum Beach, Courtenay, Campbell River, Port Hardy and Port McNeill. The Wilson’s Group will provide a 25 percent discount off the regular adult fare for TAP travellers on the above routes.  For more information, call 1 866 986-3466.

Victoria Disability Resource Centre 

“We offer the free use of three public computers and a printer, as well as a number of Assistive Technology (AT) software programs and devices, to people with disabilities.” (Victoria Disability Resource Centre, 2022) 

McAdams Foundation 

The Foundation provides funds to help create a happier life for children and teenagers with disabilities or impairments.  

The Cridge Center for the Family 

The Cridge Respite and Respitality Services are two interconnected programs, designed to meet the needs of families in Greater Victoria who are raising a child with a diagnosed disability or mental health challenge. Our goal is to offer an opportunity for parents or guardians to have a vital break from the physical and mental stressors of day-to-day life to rest, reset, recharge, and rejuvenate. We also provide information and support to assist families in finding community resources, and in accessing respite. 

  

Interior Regions  

Nelson and Area Friends of the Family  

“Nelson and Area Friends of the Family Foundation provides assistance to children stricken with serious illness or injury by way of financial aid for travel related expenses for medical treatment, and guidance for accessing other support.” (Nelson and Area Friends of the Family, 2022).   

Unique Get Together Society (Kamloops)  

Indigenous focussed, special needs programs and therapies, respite care program, social programs and camps.   

Mamas for Mamas (Kelowna & Vancouver) 

Mamas for Mamas is a national charitable organization that supports mothers and caregivers in crisis by providing ongoing support to individuals and families facing various poverty-related struggles.” (Mamas for Mamas, 2021) 

Friends of Children 

“Friends of Children is a registered charity providing free and confidential service to Northern BC and East Kootenay families travelling to access medical treatments for their children.” (Friends of Children, 2019). 

South Okanagan Children’s Charity

“The South Okanagan Children’s Charity has assisted families of children with health problems for over 40 years.  The Children’s Charity provides assistance to families with children who have medical needs and extra medical expenses.  One hundred percent of the money collected is used to help local children and their families,” (South Okanagan Children’s Charity, 2022).  

Community Dental Access Centre – North Okanagan 

The Community Dental Access Centre (CDAC) is a non-profit charity that provides dental health services for low-income residents of the North Okanagan.  The services are provided at reduced rates (35% – 55% off) dependent upon adjusted family income, (CDAC, 2023).  

 

Northern Regions  

Friends of Children  

“Friends of Children is a registered charity providing free and confidential service to Northern BC and East Kootenay families travelling to access medical treatments for their children.” (Friends of Children, 2019). 

Northern Health Connections  

Bus Services from Vancouver to Prince Rupert. “To be eligible for the NH Connections program, patients must have a valid BC Care Card, not require care from a health professional (physician or nurse) during their trip and need to access a health service that’s not available in their home community” (Northern Health, 2022). 

Northern Health Virtual Clinic 

The Northern Health Virtual Primary and Community Care Clinic provides services by phone or through a video call. The COVID-19 Online Clinic name has changed, and is now the Northern Health Virtual Primary and Community Care Clinic.

Kyle’s Kindness 

Registered charity fundraising to cover private assessments in Northern BC and draw giveaway to families in need. 

United Way Northern BC 

Since 1967, United Way of Northern BC has been mobilizing everyday people and organizations to contribute to programs that support communities in the north. 

Prince George Community Foundation | Home (pgcf.ca)

Founded in 1995, the Prince George Community Foundation is an independent, volunteer-driven, charitable organization that brings together people who care about their community.The Prince George Community Foundation facilitates philanthropy by partnering with donors to build permanent endowment funds that support community projects.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northern BC (bigsnbc.ca) 

Since 1979, Big Brothers Big Sisters has been making a positive difference in the lives of our local youth by developing and implementing a wide range of mentoring programs; one-to-one and group programs, for both in school and outside of school.   

For Groups or Organizations  

President’s Choice Children’s Charity   

“Good food and growing and cooking skills are essential building blocks for a child to create the best future they can. President’s Choice Children’s Charity is building a nation of Power Full Kids that are well-fed and ready to learn and empowered with the skills to discover food.” (President’s Choice Charity, 2022)  

Jumpstart Charities (Canadian Tire)  

Programs include Youth Mental Health, Keeping Girls in Sport and Coaching Kids of All Abilities (Jumpstart Charities, 2022).  

  

Additional Resouces   

Autism Q and A: Autism Funding — Blog — AutismBC 

Children & Family Funding | BC Disability – Full List of Funding Resources in BC

Finding Support Services 

Cops for Kids Funding for Families (List of other charities/foundations available to families in addition to Cops for Kids).  

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