Finance, Housing, Legal, and Employment

Ancoura    This is a not-for-profit, volunteer-based organization and a registered charity providing a nurturing and fulfilling environment for adults living with a mental illness through stable, affordable housing, and a supportive community.

Causeway Work Centre     A not-for-profit agency that empowers and supports people with mental illness and other challenges to help them find rewarding work and live more independently.

Daybreak Not-for-profit Housing     Since 1982, Daybreak has been a place to call home for men and women who not only have difficulty finding affordable housing, but also struggle with issues such as mental health, recovery from addictions, escaping abusive situations, and limited life skills.  Daybreak helps residents rebuild their lives in a supportive community.  E-Mail:; telephone: 613-236-8070.​

Employment Accessibility Resource Network (EARN) is a community initiative, led by United Way Ottawa, that brings together in partnership employers, service providers, and other stakeholders with the goal of increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities and promoting inclusive and accessible workplaces.

Henson Trust: for a booklet describing this type of trust for families who wish to help support a relative who receives ODSP benefits, see “Consider a Henson Trust” in Reports, Books, and Articles.

HeretoHelp is a project of the BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information, a group of seven leading mental health and addictions non-profit agencies in British Columbia.  Since 2003, the group has been working together to help people live well and better prevent and manage mental health and substance use problems.

Housing and Residential Care for People with Mental Illness – Champlain Local Health Integration Network offers a list of special apartments and group homes which provide permanent housing for people with a mental illness.  Rent-geared-to-income, supervision, and links to psychiatric services may be among the supports available.  Mental health organizations may provide residential care for clients who require ongoing, long-term treatment.

Housing Help is an agency funded by the Province of Ontario which helps low- to moderate-income people find affordable housing, and provides tenant education and peer support for rooming house tenants, among other services.

The Inspiring Possibilities Estate Planning Guide was published in 2016 by Community Living Ontario for people who have a disability and their families.  The Guide covers Will and Trust planning, consent, capacity and legal decision-making, the Ontario Disability Support Program, the Disability Tax Credit and the Registered Disability Savings Plan.

Let’s Talk Employment: A Guide to Employment for Family Members is a resource for family members who wish to support their family member in getting and keeping employment.  Rapp, J. (2017), Boston, MA, USA: Boston University, Centre for Psychiatric Rehabilitation.  Link

Living with a Disability: The Government of Canada offers a variety of services and financial benefits to assist people with disabilities and their families.  Service Canada has compiled a list to help you find benefits that may be right for you, and a site for those caring for someone who is ill.

Money & Mental Health: Practical Financial Skills to Manage Money     Finty Australia, a free-to-use Website where individuals may compare various financial products, has produced a guide which, although targeted at an Australian audience, contains general financial tips and techniques which may be applicable to Canada’s financial system and may be found useful by Canadian caregivers.

Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)     For individuals suffering from a mental illness who fear going back to work as they think they will lose their ODSP benefits, or fear not having a backup plan if work doesn’t work out, ODSP has created some resources to help breakdown that fear and provide reassurance that they CAN indeed work and stay on ODSP at the same time.  Click here to learn more.

Ottawa Salus Corporation     This organization offers rehabilitation services, community support services, recreology, and housing to men and women, 16 years of age or older, with mental health problems.  Salus services are available in English, French, and ASL.

The Partners for Planning  (P4P) Network offers free resources designed to empower people with disabilities, families, and caregivers to create meaningful lives and secure futures, firmly rooted in community.   P4P connects a powerful network of professionals, organizations, and agencies.  With over 100 partner organizations referring families and caregivers to the Planning Network, it has become the go-to planning resource for families in Ontario.  [P4P Home page, Future Planning Tool]

The Plan Institute is a non-profit social enterprise that works to improve the lives of people with disabilities by collaborating on community-based projects, offering a suite of learning initiatives, and advocating for policy reform.  Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, the organization focusses on innovation, education, and leadership, and offers in-person and online events, publications, and digital downloads.

Reach Canada     A non-profit lawyer referral service dedicated to educating and informing persons with disabilities of all types, lawyers, caregivers, and the general public about the rights and interests of persons with disabilities, and to ensuring people with disabilities are provided with quality legal and social representation.

Rise Asset Development     For those with a history of mental health and addiction challenges who would like to start or grow a small business, and who cannot access traditional financing, Rise Asset Development, a registered charity, will provide low-interest small business loans and free training and mentorship.  For information, Email, telephone 613-725-3494, ext. 118, or visit the Web site.

Salus – see Ottawa Salus Corporation, listed above.

The Special Needs Planning Group     Based in Stouffville, Ontario, this is an organization composed of parents of people with disabilities with the goal of assisting families in the provision of a secure financial future for loved ones.  The group employs a team approach, using professional planners, lawyers, and accountants, all of whom are specialists in planning for people with disabilities, to provide solutions which include much more than just a will and a trust account.

Steps to Justice, a program of Ontario Works, equips people to work through their legal problems through easy-to-understand steps.  The service offers practical tools, such as checklists, fillable forms, and self-help guides; referral information for legal and social services across Ontario; and live chat and Email-based support.  The site also provides caregivers with legal information specifically related to the Ontario Disability Support Program.

STRIDE, with headquarters in Milton, Ontario, is an organization which supports youth and adults struggling with mental health or addictions as they seek meaningful employment.  It offers face-to-face support from employment specialists, workshops, and peer mentoring.