Navigating the world of Developmental Services, the Ontario Disability Support Program, Developmental Services Ontario, the Passport individualized funding initiative, and other systems and services people with intellectual disabilities or autistic persons and their families might need can be overwhelming. At LiveWorkPlay we have very little control over how individuals and families experience the above, but we are here to help, and this includes striving for clarity about our own supports and how they are accessed.
As described in How We Can Help You, we have two distinct options (funding mechanism and registration processes are completely different).
- Employment Supports
- Community Connecting and Supported Independent Living
Employment Supports are provided through the Ontario Disability Support Program, which is also part of MCCSS but is distinct from the Developmental Services Ontario placement process for our Community Connecting and Supported Independent Living services (see below). It is typically easier to qualify for ODSP Employment Supports and the waiting list is also typically shorter, since employment supports by their nature diminish over time and vacancies are created more quickly. Our employment supports process is detailed here.
To get started with LiveWorkPlay employment supports, contact our ODSP Employment Supports intake coordinator Tara McRae 613-702-0327 to learn more. You can expect to hear back within two business days. Please note that we can help you with your ODSP application (this must be completed and approved before we can work with any job seeker). If you qualify, you do not have to work with LiveWorkPlay, there are other ODSP providers, and these options will be explained to you when you submit your application. You can also specify your interest in LiveWorkPlay if you know that you would like to work with us.
Community Connecting and Supported Independent Living supports can be accessed in three different ways, which can also be used in combination. These are:
- Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS) funded placement through Developmental Services Ontario – there is no cost to supports accessed through DSO, but this option requires a registration and placement process which is conducted independently of LiveWorkPlay. Completing the process does not typically lead to immediate access to supports from LiveWorkPlay or any other agency that is eligible to accept DSO referrals. Because the DSO system uses prioritization methods, the passage of time alone does not move people closer to receiving supports and the wait can be long.
- Passport funding through MCCSS – this is a type of individualized funding provided to the individual and/or their family which can be used according to Passport guidelines for a variety of expenses, including the purchase of Community Connecting and Living Supports from LiveWorkPlay. This is known as “fee-for-service” and can also be purchased without Passport (see below). Our rate is currently $50 per hour and subject to change. This is an average fee for the Ottawa area, and includes not only staff wages, but an allocation for all of the associated training, supervision, and infrastructure costs. Passport may be combined with DSO placement and/or FFS (see below)
- Fee For Service (FFS) paid by the individual and/or their family – this is the same arrangement as Passport (above) but it means that payment is not associated with MCCSS funds, they are coming directly from the individual or family (or another source of funds they might have at their disposal). The rate is $50 per hour (subject to change) and FFS may be combined with DSO placement and/or Passport funds.
As mentioned, DSO placement can take years, and there is no certainty as to how long it might take. Qualified individuals will not have to wait as long for Passport funds, but LiveWorkPlay is not always able to accept Passport referrals (or FFS referrals) right away, because our staff are always fully allocated, and unless we experience vacancies (someone who withdraws from support) we need to build up sufficient interest in Passport/FFS to increase our staff size and also to ensure we have the right staff in place to meet the specific needs of those who are waiting. Contact Grace Hudson at 613-702-0329 to learn more about any of these options for accessing Community Connecting and Supported Independent Living.
If you are looking for Community Connecting and Supported Independent Living supports provided by a designated French language service provider, you can contact these agencies directly:
- L’Association pour l’intégration sociale d’Ottawa
- L’Association d’Ottawa-Carleton pour personnes ayant une déficience intellectuelle
- L’Arche Ottawa
- ABLE2: Soutien aux personnes vivant avec des incapacités
or you may wish to contact Services de l’Ontario pour les personnes ayant une déficience intellectuelle to discuss the different services that are available.