Other supports and community resources

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2-1-1: Real People, Real Support

2-1-1 connects people to social services and community programs. Talk to a real person who will talk to you about your situation and refer you to the right program or service. You can find resources for:

  • Abuse/assault
  • Community programs
  • Disabilities
  • Emergency/crisis
  • Employment/training
  • Family services
  • Financial assistance
  • Food
  • Government/legal
  • Health care
  • Homelessness
  • Housing
  • Indigenous people
  • LGTBQ+
  • Mental health/addictions
  • Newcomers
  • Older adults
  • Youth

Online

Enter your postal code or choose a topic

Or

Start the chat

  • Monday to Friday from 7 am to 9 pm
  • Navi the chatbot is available 24.7 in English

Phone or text

2-1-1 or 613-761-9076
Toll-Free 1-877-330-3213
TTY – 855-405-7446

If you are looking for information on a program or service delivered by the City of Ottawa, call 3-1-1.

Help with electricity, hydro and gas arrears

Low-Income Energy Assistance Program

If you are behind on your electricity or natural gas bill, you may qualify for emergency financial help through the Low-income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP).

Low-income customers, who are not on Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), can get:

  • Up to $500 in emergency assistance for their natural gas and electricity bills, or
  • Up to $600 if home is heated electrically. 

For more information, visit the Low-income Energy Assistance Program of the Ontario Energy Board.

Note – Temporary changes to the LEAP are in effect to support Ontarians through the pandemic. Eligibility criteria may change.

Emergency Assistance

The City of Ottawa’s Employment and Social Services can help with electricity and gas arrears, and reconnection fees.

Low-income customers, who are not on Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), can apply for help:

Phone

3-1-1 between 8:30 am and 4 pm:

  • Select 1 for service in English or 2 for service in French
  • Select 4 for Community and Social Services
  • Bell Relay TTY 1-800-855-0511

If you are receiving financial assistance from Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program, contact your case worker for more information.

Ontario Electricity Support Program

Ontario Energy Board's Ontario Electricity Support Program (OESP) lowers electricity bills for low-income households. The OESP provides a monthly hydro credit to eligible customers based on household income and household size.

Low-income customers of an electricity utility can apply for a reduction in their electricity bill. The OESP will reduce the cost of a household electricity by applying a monthly credit directly to the bill.  The credit will depend on how many people live in the home and their combined household income.

For more information, contact the Ontario Electricity Support Program.

Financial support – Ottawa Hand in Hand

If you are already a participant in a community or social service agency program, if you are an individual or family with a low-income or a family member with a disability, you may qualify for the Ottawa Hand in Hand recreation and culture fee support program.

Only residents of the City of Ottawa may apply for the Ottawa Hand in Hand subsidy, on their own behalf or for a dependent wishing to participate in programs or activities offered by the Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services Department (RCFS). For additional information on Ottawa Hand in Hand, the City of Ottawa’s fee assistance program, residents are invited to visit their local recreation or culture facility or any City Client Service Centre.

Please note: applicants will be asked to provide proof of identity, residency and of financial need and should be prepared to provide copies of formal documentation.

Applicants must meet one of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Evidence of being in receipt of Ontario Works
  • Evidence of being in receipt of a Child Care Subsidy
  • Evidence of being in receipt of Essential Health and Social Supports
  • Evidence of being in receipt of Ontario Disability Support Pension (ODSP)
  • Evidence of being in receipt of Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD/MCSS)
  • Evidence of being in receipt of a Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS)
  • Means test using the Low Income Cut-Off
    • T451E Notice of Assessment or,
    • Child Tax Benefit Form
  • Special circumstances may also be considered (details to be provided in the application form).
  • Residents of all ages are eligible.
  • Residents are encouraged to apply as early as possible before the program registration period.
  • Each qualifying individual, or member of a family, is eligible for an annual amount of fee support ($200 per person).
  • Applicants are encouraged to pay a minimum of 25 per cent of the program cost.
  • A parent or guardian can transfer all, or a portion of their Ottawa Hand in Hand fee support entitlement to a child or children in their household.

How to apply

  1. Complete the online application form, or pick one up at most staffed recreation facilities or at a Client Service Centre.
  2. Bring the completed application form to your local recreation or cultural facility.

A supervisor will review the application for approval. Applications can only be approved at a recreation or cultural facility.

Save for a child's education

Did you know you might be able to get up to $2000 from the federal government to help pay for your child’s future education? The money you get will not affect your Ontario Works or ODSP payments. And you do not need to add any of your own money. To see if you qualify and to apply for the Canada Learning Bond, visit smartsaver.org.

Reduced Transit Fares

Free transit for displaced persons and refugees

OC Transpo is providing six months of free travel for displaced persons and refugees who have arrived in Ottawa.

The transit pass is valid on buses, trains and Para Transpo. Passes are distributed by the Catholic Centre for Immigrants and local settlement agencies.

For information on eligibility, visit the Displaced Persons and Refugees Transit Pass Program on the OC Transpo website.

To apply, call the Catholic Centre for Immigrants at 613-232-9634.

EquiPass

EquiPass includes single ride fares or monthly passes that are available at about half the cost of an adult regular fare.

Apply for an EquiPass if:

  • Your family income is below the low-income threshold
  • You are not currently receiving Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) benefits or are 65 years of age or older (See information about the Community Pass and Senior Pass)
  • You are not currently receiving transportation benefits from Social Services (including Ontario Works)

For information on eligibility and how to apply, visit the OC Transpo website: EquiPass | OC Transpo

Community Pass

The Community pass is available to Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) recipients and offers a reduced fare for both single-ride and monthly passes.

For information on eligibility and how to apply, visit the OC Transpo website: Community pass | OC Transpo

Find a computer

Do you need to use a computer?

View this map for all computers available to the public.

This list gives you the name, the address, the hours of operation and any access criteria.