Family Respite Services supports during Covid-19 Emergency Response

The support for families through FRS is an essential service in our community. We are not closed and continue to be there for you. However, as recommended we have most of our staff working remotely and we have closed our main office to visitors during this emergency response. The best way for families and Direct Support Providers to contact Family Coordinators is through their email, but they will also be receiving their voice mail and returning calls. We want to be in contact with you. We ask that Direct Support Providers and families send in timesheets or invoices through email. Send them to

We know that this is a very stressful time for families and direct support providers. We continue to urge families to follow the guidelines provided by Public Health. Our request is that you refrain from having Direct Support Providers come into your home for three weeks if possible. The purpose of this is to minimize personal contact and risk of transmitting Covid-19 to families, children and direct support providers. Families may consider having a close family member support your child for a period of time.

We know that this is not possible for some families. For those families who continue to have someone coming into their home please check in with one another prior to have anyone in the home. On each visit, review whether anyone in the family, the direct support worker or people that live with either party have travelled, are in self-quarantine or are experiencing an symptoms that are associated with Covid-19. If any of these conditions are present then DO NOT go forward with the support. In addition, Direct Support Providers are urged to practice hand washing several times throughout the visit. If any family using in home support or Direct Support Providers who are actively working become affected by Covid-19 we need to know this information immediately.

We know that this will also create hardship for some Direct Support Providers. If you need information about emergency funds or Employment Insurance that are available through the federal government please reach out to us.

Throughout this period we want to urge everyone to stay connected with each other and with us, to believe that we will all get through this and taking these steps will help everyone in our community. We hope to see creative responses from families and Direct Support Providers about ways that you are maintaining connections and doing activities through on line and would love to share your stories! 

Informational web link regarding How to Self Monitor provided Public Health Ontario.

Contract In Home Support Workers- SSAH and ACSD

Families who receive funding through the Special Services at Home (SSAH) program or Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD) program often wish to hire an in home worker for their child.  The worker contracts with the family to provide regular hours of service.  During this time the worker spends time with the child to develop skills, build relationships, participate in the community and work on specific goals. 

If Family Respite Services is administering the funds for the family we assist the family to recruit a worker.  Once the family selects the worker, they become an employee of FRS.  A Family Coordinator from FRS provides support and resources to the family and the worker.

  • In home workers typically work for 3-10 hours each week, depending on the amount of funding granted to the child.
  • Contracts are arranged with workers for up to a one year period.
  • Families who need this service may live anywhere in Essex County.
  • Workers must be screened through FRS, including a police clearance, references and completion of the Respite Care on line training course.
  • Families who administer their SSAH funds themselves may recruit an in home worker using the resources of  In these situations, the in home worker is not an employee of FRS.

How do you become an in home worker?

If you are interested in becoming an in home worker contact:

Alexandria Fischer 519-972-9688 ext.156 to get registered for the on line training course and discuss your interest and qualifications.

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