Transitioning to life at the shelter can be difficult for children. We are here to support you and your children and provide holistic services to meet their every need. Our Child Family Advocate Workers provide counselling, advocacy, referrals, help securing child care and assistance for children who have special needs. You can call our crisis line at (416) 252-5829 any time to find out more.
Programs and activities
We offer a wide range of offer recreational programs for kids of all ages. There are in-house activities as well as scheduled outings (museums, movies etc.). Also, many children celebrate their birthdays while they are living at the shelter. We will provide you with all of the supplies you will need to make your child’s birthday a positive and memorable event.
Preparing your child
You can let your child know you are going to stay in a big bright house where they will be meeting new children of different ages and sharing space with other families. They will be lots of fun things to do at the shelter and kids have a play room filled with toys and games and a fun backyard playground. You can let them know that you will be given your own special bedroom just for you and them and that you will be able to stay there for as long as you need to until you find a safe home.
Our Child and Family Advocate can assist you in applying for subsidized daycare at a centre in the community. Regardless of immigration status, income or employment you will be eligible for subsidized daycare while you are living at the shelter.
Some mothers choose to have their children stay at their current school. If this is the decision you make, staff will assist you in speaking with the school to put safety plans in place. If you are concerned about their safety, changing the children’s school may be the best choice. We will work with you to enroll your children in a school in the shelter’s neighbourhood. The schools in our neighbourhood are very understanding of your situation and work hard to ensure children adapt well and thrive in their new environment.
Counselling for children
We have a Child & Family Advocate at the shelter and a Parent Support Worker and Young Women’s Counsellor at our outreach centre who are all available to counsel your children, We can also refer you to outside agencies that provide specific supports for your child. We will work with you to put the best plan for your child.
Children with special needs
Children with special needs are always given the support they deserve. We will work with you to determine how we can best meet your child’s needs.
Space for kids
The shelter has a large, bright playroom attached to the kitchen where moms can safely supervise them while they play. There is a homework area and large family room. The backyard has a small playground and the shelter is steps away from a park and library. Check out our photo tour to see the spaces.
Food and meals
All food is provided for you at the shelter and we will accommodate any allergies or dietary needs/restrictions you or your child has. We only serve halal meat whenever possible and the shelter is pork free. There is a Cook in site who cooks dinner and an after school snack for the kids Monday to Friday. Women are welcome to cook meals for the family in the large, accessible kitchen.