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Guide to Services and Programs for Older Adults

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It is my pleasure to introduce the City of Ottawa Guide to Services and Programs for Older Adults.

This valuable guide contains information on City of Ottawa services including:

  • Who to call for services
  • How to register for recreation programs
  • How to access the Ottawa Public Library’s delivery service
  • Where to get information on public health programs or adult day programs in your community
  • And so much more

As an older adult, you are a member of the fastest-growing age group in our city. In fact, the number of older adults is expected to more than double over the next 20 years.

The City of Ottawa wants to make it easier for you to access City services and continue to be an active member of the community by providing the information you need in easy-to-use formats.

This Guide to Services and Programs for Older Adults resulted from valuable feedback provided by residents during the City’s development of its Older Adult Plan. It is another example of the City’s commitment to meeting the needs of older adults in our community.

I am proud of the work the City is doing to improve and enhance services to older adults.

On behalf of my Council colleagues, I would like to thank the Seniors Roundtable and community members who assisted in developing this guide.

Jim Watson

Mayor of Ottawa


Dear resident,

The City of Ottawa Guide to Services and Programs for Older Adults provides an overview of the many City led programs and services that are available to enhance the lives of older residents.

As the Chair of the Community and Protective Services Committee, I am pleased with the scope of information contained in this Guide.  I trust that you will discover information about the various programs and services that are offered to assist you in living healthy active lives. Your well-being is our priority.  

As the older population continues to grow, the City of Ottawa remains committed to enhancing the quality of life of older residents.  Through the Older Adult Plan 2015-2018, the City is taking concrete steps to make policies, services, facilities and programs more accessible and responsive to the needs and interests of older persons.  This Guide represents an example of the work undertaken by the City to make Ottawa an age-friendly city and I hope it will help you find the City programs and services you need.  

If you require more information, please call 3-1-1 and speak to one of our staff members. 

Diane Deans

Ottawa City Councillor for Gloucester-Southgate

General information

Ottawa Public Library

For questions about the books, services, or programs at the Ottawa Public Library:

Ottawa Police Service

Be sure to call the right number, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to get the service you need:

  • 9-1-1 – For life threatening emergencies or to report a crime in progress
  • 613-230-6211 – For other emergencies (e.g. traffic accident)
  • 613-236-1222 ext. 7300 (TTY: 613-760-8100) – To report a theft, property damage, missing person, or stolen vehicle
  • 613-236-1222 (TTY: 613-232-1123) – For all other questions or to reach a Community Police Centre

Ottawa Public Health

To talk with a public health nurse or to find out more about Ottawa Public Health programs:

  • Call Ottawa Public Health’s information line at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656)
  • Visit

Public Transit (OC Transpo and Para Transpo)

  • OC Transpo: Call 613-741-4390 (TTY 613-741-5280) or visit
  • Para Transpo: Call 613-244-1289 (TTY 613-244-4833) or visit
  • Services for persons with disabilities (Accessible Services): Call the Access OC Hotline at 613-842-3625 (TTY 613-741-5280)

Getting around the City

Accessible Parking Permit

People with physical disabilities may apply to the Ontario Ministry of Transportation for an Accessible Parking Permit (APP) for both on-street and off-street parking. Drivers or passengers who display this permit are entitled to special parking privileges in public parking areas and on public roadways.

To apply for an Accessible Parking Permit:

  • Visit the local office of the Ontario Ministry of Transportation or visit

For more information about City of Ottawa privileges for drivers with an Accessible Parking Permit:

OC Transpo – Services Public Transit

  • Buses can lower to the curb for easy boarding. Other features to make travel easier include:
  • Bilingual announcements of each stop so you always know where you are along the route
  • Priority seating near the front of the bus and on the O-Train for anyone who has difficulty standing in a moving vehicle
  • Free Priority Seating cards, Attendant cards and Medical Emergency cards
  • A free Travel Training Program to help you learn how to travel safely and independently

Discounts and Free Fares for Seniors 65+

If you are aged 65 or older, take advantage of these discounts from OC Transpo:

  • Ride free on Wednesdays on all routes
  • Reduced cash and PRESTO card fares on regular routes
  • With a monthly pass, you get a discount and unlimited travel on all routes
  • Rural Shopper’s Routes 201 to 205 are free at all times

For more information about these services:

Para Transpo

If you are unable to take conventional bus transit (or the O-Train) some or all of the time because of a disability, consider applying for Para Transpo’s door-to-door transportation service. Registered Para Transpo customers may also join the Taxi Coupon Program to get lower rates for accessible taxis.

To apply for Para Transpo or to get more information:

Rural Transportation Options

If you are an older adult living in rural Ottawa, there are many options available to help you travel. The City of Ottawa partners with Rural Community Support Services to offer additional transportation options.

For more information about these services:

Health and support services

Ottawa Public Health

Ottawa Public Health helps older adults maintain their health and independence by offering programs such as:

  • Community Connect: Staff can connect you to services to keep you safe and living at home. This program can also offer training to help you identify older adults who may need support services
  • Flu clinics: Have you had your flu shot? The City of Ottawa offers free clinics at many locations each year in the fall
  • Healthy Aging: A public health nurse can speak to your group about healthy aging
  • Preventing Falls: Have you had a fall or do you worry about falling? Public health nurses offer clinics to help older adults learn how to prevent falls

For information about these programs:

  • Call a Public Health nurse 613-580-6744
  • Call 3-1-1

Essential Health and Social Supports Program

The Essential Health and Social Supports Program is available to people with  a low income and limited assets. The program provides financial help for health-related items such as – prescription drugs, eyeglasses, dental care, diabetic supplies, incontinence supplies, bathroom aids, respiratory supplies, and mobility devices.

You must apply for the program and provide financial information. To apply or get more information:

  • Call Community Supports at 613-580-2424 (ext. 24994)

Long Term Care Homes

The City of Ottawa operates four Long Term Care Homes that offer many services and programs for residents.

If you would like to take a tour of any of the City of Ottawa’s Long Term Care Homes, call for an appointment.

1. Centre d’accueil Champlain (Vanier) – 613-746-3543

2. Garry J. Armstrong (Porter Island) – 613-789-5100

3. Peter D. Clark (Centrepointe) – 613-274-2671

4. Carleton Lodge (Nepean) – 613-825-3763

If you would like to apply for long term care:

  • Contact the Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) – 613-745-5525 for information. The CCAC coordinates applications and admissions for all Long Term Care Homes in Ontario

Residential Services Homes (Domiciliary Hostels)

The Residential Services Homes Program provides financial support for housing to adults who cannot live on their own and need some help with daily living activities.

Housing is in private or non-profit residences (also known as domiciliary hostels). To be considered for the program, you must apply and take part in a financial and personal assessment.

For more information:


Ontario Renovates Program

This program provides financial support for home repairs and renovations to help seniors (65+) and people with disabilities live independently. It is open to:

  • Seniors who own their home and have a low income
  • People with disabilities who own their home and have a low income
  • Landlords who want to modify existing units or buildings to make them more accessible

To apply for the Ontario Renovates Program or get more information:

  • Call the Ontario Renovates Program at 613-580-2424 (ext. 12300)
  • Call 3-1-1

Property Tax Deferral for Seniors

If you are 65 or older, own your home, and are living on a low income,you may qualify for one of the City of Ottawa’s tax deferral programs. The City of Ottawa offers two programs – Full and Partial Property Tax Deferral. Both programs allow eligible people to defer payment of some or all property tax. These programs are also open to people with a disability who have a low income.

The two programs have different requirements. To find out more about Property Tax Deferral:


If you have an emergency, call 9-1-1.

CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) Essentials Training

The Ottawa Paramedic Service designed a CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) training program specifically for older adults. Older adults will learn how to help other older adults learn CPR. The course is 2.5 hours long and covers the basics of CPR and how to use an Automatic External Defibrillator. Teachers and participants are in an informal learning situation with lots of practice. Since this is a condensed course, it does not qualify for a workplace certification. However, participants will receive adequate knowledge and skills that will prepare them to face an emergency situation.

For more information on CPR training and how to register:

  • Call 3-1-1

Emergency Situations

It is important that you know what to do and how to stay safe in an emergency. The City of Ottawa’s Are You Ready? program offers workshops and training for community groups and businesses. Find out what you need to prepare for an emergency such as, a flood, severe weather, or a blackout.

For more information or to book a workshop:

Ottawa Fire Services – Fire Safety

Learn about fire safety and fire prevention. Ottawa Fire Services can help older adults and people who work with older adults learn what to do to prepare for a fire, how to prevent fires and what to do in a fire emergency.

Ottawa Fire Services can also provide fire safety information at events focused on messaging for older adults. A Fire Prevention Officer will answer questions and give out information on apartment building fire safety, smoke alarms, escape planning and more.

The Fire Safety Learning Centre trailer is a mobile training classroom that can be brought to most locations within the city. The Learning Centre has two rooms, a kitchen and a bedroom, where participants can learn and practice preventing, extinguishing and escaping from residential fires.

If you would like to book a fire safety presentation for your group:

  • Call 613-580-2658

Ottawa Police Service - Elder Abuse

Elder abuse is any act that harms or threatens to harm an older person. It can include physical, sexual, financial, and psychological abuse, as well as neglect.

The Ottawa Police Service – Elder Abuse Section investigates all reports of elder abuse. The Elder Abuse Section staff may refer the report to the police for further investigation, or to the Victim Crisis Section staff to get help for the victim of the abuse.

For more information, or if you are concerned about an older person:

  • Contact the Elder Abuse Section at 613-236-1222 (ext. 2400)

Ottawa Police Service - Seniors Fraud

The Ottawa Police Service – Organized Fraud Section investigates criminal activities that target older adults. They also make presentations with the ABCs of Fraud Program to keep seniors from becoming victims of scams and fraud.

For more information on preventing fraud:

  • Visit the Ottawa Police website
  • Call the Organized Fraud Section – 613-236-1222 (ext. 5433)


City of Ottawa Volunteer Program

The City of Ottawa offers a wide range of volunteer opportunities for residents. You can get involved in programs at City of Ottawa museums, theatres, Libraries and Archives, Long Term Care Homes, special needs and recreation programs, and much more.

For more information about volunteering for the City of Ottawa:

Contact information

ServiceOttawa is your first stop for City information and services.

Contact us for your City needs, such as:

  • Recreation programs for all ages and skill levels
  • Financial assistance options like our tax deferral program
  • Social housing and long term care homes
  • Volunteering, public transportation, snow removal, garbage collection
  • Reporting a problem or a compliment, and much more!

Give us a call by dialing:

613-580-2400613-580-2401 (TTY)

7 days per week, 24 hours per day

Staff can answer your questions in 170 languages

Visit us online at:

7 days per week, 24 hours per day

Access convenient online service requests, City information and more.

The Older Adult 50+ portal (under ‘Residents’) is a convenient place to get City information of interest to you all in one place.

Drop by one of our Client Service Centres

Drop by any one of the urban or rural locations nearest you (see next page for locations and hours of operation).

Client Service Centre Locations

Urban Centres

Open 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Monday to Friday.

City Hall is open 8:30 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday.

1. City Hall

(Federal, Provincial, and Municipal services available)

110 Laurier Ave. W. Ottawa

2. West/South – Ben Franklin Place Client Service Centre

101 Centrepointe Dr. Nepean

3. East – Orléans Client Service Centre

255 Centrum Blvd. Orléans

4. West – Kanata Client Service Centre

Main level, 580 Terry Fox Dr., Kanata

Rural Centres

Call 3-1-1 or visit for hours and days of operation.

5. Metcalfe Client Service Centre

8243 Victoria St., Metcalfe

6. West Carleton Client Service Centre

5670 Carp Rd. Kinburn

7. North Gower Client Service Centre

2155 Roger Stevens Dr., North Gower

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Help around the Home

Caregiver Support Program

Ottawa Public Health nurses offer people who care for older adults the opportunity to get together for discussion and support. Telephone advice is also available.

For a free resource guide to local services or more information about caregiver support programs:

  • Contact Ottawa Public Health’s Information Line at 613-580-6744(TTY: 613-580-9656)
  • Visit

Garbage Collection (Special Consideration Waste Program – incontinence products)

If you or someone you care for needs to have weekly collection of incontinence products, you can register for the City’s Special Consideration Waste Program. Participating households can place one bag of incontinence products out for collection every week.

To register for the Special Consideration Waste Program:

Home Support Services

Home Support Services can help you with light housekeeping tasks such as sweeping floors, cleaning bathrooms, changing bed linens, and laundry.

The program is available to people who:

  • Receive support from Ontario Works (OW) or the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), have a low income and limited assets
  • And live with some type of limitation so they are unable to complete these tasks on their own

You must apply for the program and provide financial information.

  • Call Community Supports at 613-580-2424 (ext. 24994)

Library Delivery Service (Homebound Services)

If you cannot visit the Ottawa Public Library for three months or more because of age, a disability or an illness, the Library can come to you. Once a month,the Homebound Services program delivers library material to individual homes,seniors’ residences, and care centres in Ottawa. This service is free.

For more information about the Library’s Homebound Services:

  • Call 613-580-2944

Snow Clearing (Snow Go and Snow Go Assist)

The City of Ottawa’s Snow Go programs help older adults (60+) and people with disabilities to get snow cleared from their private driveways and walkways.

If you have a low income, you may qualify for financial help to pay for snow clearing. You must apply and provide financial information.

For information about the Snow Go and Snow Go Assist programs:

Recreation and Leisure

Activities: Social and Physical

The City of Ottawa offers many different recreation and cultural programs for adults 50+. Keep your mind and body active through programs such as museum workshops, painting, fitness, sewing, computer use, bridge, swimming, guest speakers, sports, and more.

  • Residents 65+ receive a 10% discount on City of Ottawa program registration fees. (To receive the discount, you must include your date of birth on your account)
  • Fitness memberships are available at a reduced cost to seniors aged 65+
  • To register for specific programs or take part in drop-in activities, call 3-1-1 or visit

Consult the Recreation Guide for Adults 50+ for complete information on programs and drop-in activities. You may also be interested in programs listed in the Adult section of the general Recreation Guide.

  • Residents are welcome to enjoy City museums or theatres

Adult Day Programs

Carleton Lodge and Centre d’accueil Champlain offer Adult Day Programs for older adults who are frail, have dementia or face other barriers that prevent them from taking part in activities. Small group activities promote good health  and social interaction for participants. The programs also provide a break for caregivers.

To apply for one of these adult day programs:

  • Contact the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) at 613-745-5525

Ottawa Public Library – Talking Book Service

The Library offers a Talking Book Service for people with a print disability. The service gives registered users access to the Talking Book collection as well as the materials available through the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) Library Partners Program.

To register for the Talking Book Service:

Ottawa Public Library – Accessible Services and Collections

The Library’s accessible collections include large print books, children’s braille books, audio books in various formats, captioned DVDs, DVDs with described video and eBooks.

All Library branches have an assistive technology computer workstation which includes a height adjustable desk, widescreen monitor, large print keyboard, trackball mouse, scanner, and software including ZoomText, JAWS, DragonNaturallySpeaking, Kurzweil 3000 and BrowseAloud.

For more information about the Library’s accessible services:

Ottawa Public Library Programs

The Ottawa Public Library offers free programs for adults 50+. Learn about different writers, hobbies, healthy living, basic computer skills, and how to use email, Facebook, the Internet and more.

For more information on programs and locations:

 Seniors’ Centres and Drop Ins

The City of Ottawa operates Seniors’ Centres that offer programs and drop-in activities for adults 50+.

To find out about programs:

1. Churchill Seniors Centre, 345 Richmond Rd. 613-798-8927

2. Heron Seniors Centre, 1480 Heron Rd. 613-247-4802

3. Kanata Seniors Centre, 2500 Campeau Dr. 613-580-2980

4. Nepean Seniors Recreation Centre, 1701 Woodroffe Ave. 613-580-2828

5. The Friendly Corner, St. Laurent Shopping Centre – (lower level)

For more information call 613-580-9620

or visit

There are several other seniors’ centres managed by community organizations which offer a range of programming in both English and French.

For more information:

Hand in Hand Recreation Fee Subsidy

Do you need help to pay for a City of Ottawa recreation or cultural program? If you need help to pay the registration fee for a City of Ottawa recreation or cultural program or activity, ask for a Hand in Hand application form at your local recreation facility or any City of Ottawa Client Service Centre. You will be asked to provide financial information when you apply.