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.

Respite Training Portal: Respite Services Training Certificate

Safeguards Training is a website devoted to those who are interested in learning more about respite work and those already providing respite support services who want to access more information or simply share ideas.

The Respite Services Training Certificate can be used by a range of people. It was designed as a self-paced online course to prepare individuals to work in respite support situations and also provides a basic level of training for current respite workers. Those who are already working in the field may find it useful to take the course to explore areas they are less familiar with ensure they have a full understanding of all the skills required.

Price: $28.25

Course Outline

  • Module 1: The World of Respite Support: An Overview
  • Module 2: People You Will Support
  • Module 3: How to Support a Person in a Meaningful Life
  • Module 4: Communication
  • Module 5: Boundaries
  • Module 6: Personal Care
  • Module 7: Creating a Positive Environment
  • Module 8: Confidentiality
  • Module 9: Health and Safety
  • Module 10: Abuse
  • Module 11: Closure
  • Module 12: Quiz and Summary

Learning Objectives
By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe the role of a Direct Support Provider
  • Support a person in a "meaningful life"
  • Deploy active listening skills for effective communication
  • Define clear boundaries of what should and should not be expected of a respite support provider
  • Create a positive environment to handle challenging respite support situations
  • Implement good health and safety practices in respite support situations
  • Recognize signs of abuse and know the proper procedures to follow in such cases
  • Properly bring closure to a respite support relationship

Please contact or call (905) 889-5030 ext. 121 with any questions about registration, your user name and password or certificate.

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