Children & Family
Register a Manitoba birth - Vital Statistics Agency - how to obtain a birth certificate and social insurance number for your child, and how to apply for the Canada Child Benefit.

Manitoba Child Benefit Program – monthly financial assistance for low-income families who are NOT on EIA. Also provides help with some of the costs of children’s prescription eyeglasses. Apply online or contact 1-800-563-8793. 

You may be eligible for other benefits in addition to the monthly Canada Child Tax Benefit:

Healthy Baby Program – A  two-part program that supports pregnant women, new parents, and their babies through:

  • The Manitoba Prenatal Benefit – a financial benefit that helps pregnant women buy healthy food. You must live in Manitoba and have a family income of less than $32,000 to qualify.
  • Healthy Baby Community Support Programs – free drop-in groups for pregnant women/their partners/parents with babies under the age of one to get information and support for a healthy pregnancy and baby. Call 204-945-1301 in Winnipeg or toll-free at 1-888-848-0140 outside Winnipeg.

Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care – for help in paying eligible day care costs for low-income parents. Apply online for the subsidy or call 204-945-0286 (in Winnipeg) or toll-free 1-877-587-6224 (outside Winnipeg) or email

Canada Education Savings Program (CESP) - The Government of Canada can help you save for your child's education after high school by putting money into a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) that can be used to pay for expenses related to full-time or part-time studies in a trade school, CEGEP, college, university, or in an apprenticeship program. Opening an RESP is more than just building savings; studies indicate that an RESP can help strengthen a child's aspirations of pursuing and completing a higher education.

Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) - The Government of Canada provides 20 cents on every dollar contributed to an RESP, up to a yearly maximum of $500, on a contribution of $2,500. Depending on the income of the child's primary caregiver, families may be eligible for an additional 10% to 20% on the first $500 put into an RESP every year.

Canada Learning Bond (CLB) - a payment of $500 up to $2,000 that the Government of Canada gives to eligible families to help with the cost of the child's education after high school. It is put directly into your child's Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) at the bank.

Every eligible child born in 2004 or later receives $500 into their RESPS to start. They continue to receive an additional $100 for every year they are eligible, depending on their family's income, until the age of 15, for a maximum of $2,000. You do not have to put any of your own money into the RESP to get this bond. The CLB is retroactive; those applying later in a child’s life for the CLB will still receive monies from the Government of Canada.

There are many financial benefits of getting RESPs opened as early as possible.

  • The sooner the CLB begins to be deposited the more interest may be earned.
  • Opening the RESP, even if only to deposit the “free” CLB dollars, makes it easier for parents to make contributions at any time if they choose.
Important: Children born after 2004 need a Social Insurance Number to access the CLB and/or Canada Education Savings Grant.

CALL TOLL FREE: 1-866-991-0025
Community members from anywhere in Canada can call ACORN to find out about, and register for, the Canada Learning Bond. ACORN will take basic information from the applicant (using SmartSAVER's portal), and connect them with a bank of their choice to set up a meeting to complete the registration process.

Additional information about the Canada Education Savings Programs

    • RESPs Made Easy - A Smartsaver video - describes the steps involved in starting up an RESP. Also see the SmartSaver website for more on what RESPs offer, how to choose an RESP, and for help in applying online.
    • RESP infographics poster from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) [English] [French]
    • CESG and CLB - Saving for Education: A Little Goes a Long Way  [English] [French] - from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
    • CLB infographics poster - Save for Their Future: from ESDC 8-1/2" x 14" [English] [French] and 8-1/2" x 11" [English] [French
    • Other - Social media [English and French] - Facebook, Twitter, and video links from ESDC providing additional information on setting up RESPs and Canada Learning Bonds.

Child Disability Benefit - a tax-free benefit for families who care for a child under age 18 who is eligible for the Disability Tax Credit.

Free Books for Children and Youth

Did you know that almost 25% of Canadian households don’t own a single book?

First Book Canada helps organizations provide low income children with brand new books and educational resources on an ongoing basis.

How do you get free books? Follow this link to register with First Book Canada: As a registered member, you will receive email notifications about upcoming FREE book distribution events in Winnipeg (typically once a year) where you can choose and collect hundreds – and potentially thousands of new books for the children and youth that you serve. The more individuals from your organization that register, the more books you can claim.

Youth Support Services

Resource Assistance for Youth (RaY) - a non-profit street-level agency working with street-entrenched and homeless youth up to the age of 29. RaY is non-judgmental and non-partisan, employing a harm reduction approach. Call 204-783-5617 or visit 125 Sherbrook Street or email

Macdonald Youth Services - Family Navigator Program helps guide families through the numerous therapeutic services available to youth aged 13 to 24 in their brochure and poster. Services for young persons, parents, and caregivers seeking support.



Booklet (2018)

Project summary