Creating Opportunities Today; Maximizing Independence Tomorrow

Adolescent to Adult

Questions and answers for Health Care and Social Services

Who is my key contact for this transition?

If your teen has a developmental disability or an Autism Spectrum Disorder, Valoris is your primary contact for this transition. As soon as your teen will be 16 years of age, Valoris will assist you in making a referral to Developmental Services of Eastern Ontario (DSOER) for services that may become available to your family when your teen becomes an adult (18 years of age). You may contact the Valoris at: (613) 673-5148 or 1 800 675-6168:

If your teen has a physical disability, as soon as you child will be 14 years of age, the OCTC Transition Clinic can help you navigate your teen’s transition to adulthood. To determine your teen’s eligibility and to request a referral to this clinic, please contact your OCTC Social Worker, Family Resource Worker or Nurse.

If my teen has a physical disability, how can I learn about adult services?

In addition to Valoris, it is recommended that you start investigating options for services offered in the community by contacting the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) and / or The Rehabilitation Centre (TRC).

Who is my key contact for adult services funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS)?

The Developmental Services Ontario - Eastern Region (DSO-ER) is your key contact for developmental services. Since July 2011, applications for adults with a developmental disability requiring developmental services which are funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS) must be submitted to Developmental Services Ontario - Eastern Region (DSO-ER). This process will determine if your teen is eligible for adult services.

What is Developmental Services Ontario - Eastern Region (DSO-ER)?

Developmental Services Ontario is the single point of contact for adults with developmental disabilities seeking support and services funded by the province.  Once your eligibility has been confirmed, a DSO assessor will work with you and your family to determine your service and support needs. The DSO-ER provides you with information about community services and resources, and connects you with services needed funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS). For further information, visit their website or contact them directly:

Main Office Phone: 1-855-DSO-ERDS (1-855-376-3737)
Fax: 1-855-858-3737
TTY: 1-855-777-5787
Main Office Address: 200 - 150 Montreal Rd
Ottawa ON K1L 8H2

Satellite offices may be located in your community.

An application must be completed through the DSO-ER, in order to request the following services:

  • Behaviour Services
  • Case management
  • Respite care  
  • Residential services
  • Daily activity and programs

Who can help me find resources in the community?

You can find resource available for your family by contacting Valoris Prescott Russell or visit their website:

You could also consult these websites for further information:

What are the agencies that offer private respite and residential services?

You can contact Valoris Prescott Russell (613) 673-5148 or 1 800 675-6168 or visit their website to get a list of potential agencies.

Other agencies you could consider:

What are the recreation and leisure options available to my teen, including those that are not funded by MCSS?

Please see the Recreation Therapy resource list for suggested recreation and leisure programs in your community. Community Recreation – English or contact your community case manager from Valoris Prescott Russell (613) 673-5148 or 1 800 675-6168

You may also research these options:

Who can help me organize therapy services once my teen is discharged from OCTC?

If your teen has a physical disability, and specific problems or needs, a community partner or an OCTC team member can assist with the referral to The Rehabilitation Centre (TRC) at the Ottawa Hospital or to the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC). If your teen is discharged from OCTC and does not need a referral to the Rehab Centre immediately but there is a need later on, your family physician can make a referral for you.

The Rehabilitation Centre (TRC):

Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC):

What services can The Rehabilitation Centre offer?

The Rehabilitation Centre (TRC) provides services to clients who have a physical disability and complex needs. The Rehabilitation Centre services include: Outpatient services for Seating and Mobility and splinting, Augmentative Communication and Writing Service, Social Work, Driving Rehabilitation Service, Vocational Assessment and Environmental assessment services.

For further information on the admission criteria, please visit the following website:

What are the options for seating and mobility services?

You may request an assessment from a private Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist. You may request a referral from a community physician for Occupational Therapy at The Rehabilitation Centre’s or at the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC). Seating and Mobility Transition Pamphlet

If my teen/young adult want to learn how to drive, where can we get an assessment?

It is recommended that you speak to your OCTC physiatrist to see if you are a good candidate for this assessment. If so, a referral can be made to The Rehabilitation Centre.  A vision assessment from an ophthalmologist needs to occur before the driving assessment. There is a fee for the driving assessment. Your family physician can make a referral to the Intake rehab centre to see a physiatrist who will assess your eligibility for a diving assessment:

Other driving assessment:
McConnell Medical Centre
Dr. Reen
820 McConnell Avenue
Cornwall, ON K6H 4M4
Phone: (613) 933-8990
Fax: (613) 933-8997

What resources are available to assist with my teen/young adult’s emotional and mental health needs?

We recommend that you start by discussing this with your family physician. You may be eligible for counseling from a Social Worker at the Rehabilitation Centre or through a community service. You may also visit these websites:

Does my teen/young adult need a family physician and specialists?

Yes, it is advisable that your teen/young adult have a family physician. Your pediatrician can assist you in finding a family physician. You can also check the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons website to find a family doctor in your area: If your teen is under the care of a pediatric specialist, speak to this specialist in order to obtain a referral to an adult specialist in the same discipline (neurology, orthopedics…).

What type of financial assistance is available through the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS)?

Assistance to Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD) program ends at the eighteenth birthday and you must apply to the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) for adult funding. Even if you were not eligible for ACSD, you might be eligible for the Ontario Disability Support Program. You can initiate the application process by contacting your local ODSP office six months before your 18th birthday. If you are accepted your payments will start when you reach 18.

If you receive Special Services at Home (SSAH), recent changes have occurred to the program. As of April 1 2012 Special Services at Home is for children only. Young adults, turning 18 years old, who are receiving SSAH funding, will be referred to the Passport Program.

The Passport Program provides funding for adults with a developmental disability, who are no longer in school, and are seeking transition planning and community participation supports. Starting April 1, 2012, adults with a developmental disability who are seeking direct funding for help with daily living and respite will be supported entirely through Passport.

For additional information on eligibility and how to apply visit the following link:

To apply contact your local Developmental Service Ontario Office:

How can I ensure a secure financial future for my teen/young adult?

Here are some options to explore:

Federal services for financial assistance:

Private and community based services to secure financial assistance:

  • Some law firms have lawyers that specialize in this area.  You can find a list of lawyers in the Ottawa Directory of Services for Children and Adults with ASD provided by a parent and posted on the Autism Ontario website, Ottawa Chapter. These lawyers provide services for families with children or adults with a range of disabilities including physical and developmental disabilities. Their services include:
    • Henson Trust (at any time)
    • Wills and Estate Planning, Power of Attorney
    • Legal Guardianship (capacity assessment may be required to assess guardianship)

Legal Guardianship:

If you are the caregiver of a person who does not have the ability to understand the consequences of decisions regarding finances or personal care then you may want to familiarize yourself with the option of becoming a legal Guardian. Even if you are the parent of a person with a developmental disability, at age 18 your child becomes legally competent whether they are functionally competent or not. Alternatives to Guardianship do exist. We recommend you discuss your options with a lawyer before deciding what is best for you and your child. For additional information please see the links below:

To obtain the list of capacity assessors or more information you can contact The Capacity Assessment Office at 416-327-6766 or 416-327-6424, TTY: 416-314-2687 or toll-free at 1-866-521-1033.

How can I link my teen/young adult to volunteering opportunities?

Look within your community and have conversations with family and friends about possible volunteer opportunities.

Also investigate the Volunteer Ottawa website for opportunities: You may contact Valoris Prescott Russell (613) 673-5148 or 1 800 675-6168 for support in finding an agency or service that will assist you with volunteer opportunities.

Further information may be available through:

How will my teen/young adult create/maintain a social network?

There are many social networks available. Options may include your child’s friends, your friends, student clubs and your community centre.

Other social networking possibilities:

Questions and answers on post secondary Education Options/Services

Until what age can my teen/young adult stay in secondary school?

Depending on the need, your teen can remain in high school up to the age of 21.

What are the post-secondary education options?

You can ask the guidance counselor at your teen/young adult’s current high school to help you find the appropriate community services. Examples of local post-secondary institutions that provide student disability services:

How early should we start the process of researching post-secondary options?

Upon your teen’s entry to high school, you and your teen should look into programs and post-secondary programs and institutions, to find out what the admission requirements are, and to ensure that you are planning accordingly (i.e. taking the right courses, having the right documentation to submit, etc…). Your guidance counselors / Special Student Services can provide assistance to you and your teen or you can contact the post-secondary institutions directly.

Who can we talk to if we have questions about accessibility in post-secondary institutions?

Once your teen/young adult is accepted into his/her program, s/he can contact the Special Student Services at the post-secondary institution.

If my teen/young adult is not able to pursue post-secondary education, what are our other options?

There are several options which include support groups, group homes and day programs. Depending on your teen/young adult’s needs, contacting either one of the community agencies, Valoris Prescott Russell (613) 673-5148 or 1 800 675-6168  or

the DSO-ER (Developmental Services Ontario - Eastern Region) for services funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS) can facilitate these referrals.

What will happen to my teen/young adult’s special education equipment (computers, communication devices) when he/she graduates or leaves school?

In the case for equipment that was purchased by the school through a Special Education Amount (SEA) grant, you will need to discuss this question with your teen/young adult’s school. Equipment that was funded by the Assistive Devices Program (ADP) is intended primarily for home use and therefore stays with your teen/young adult’s after they have finished school.

What types of bursaries are available?

You can check the following websites for information on bursaries:

What is a vocational assessment? Can I have a vocational assessment?

Vocational assessment is the process of determining an individual’s interests, abilities and aptitudes and skills to identify vocational strengths, needs and career potential.

Can my teen/young adult have a vocational assessment?

Anyone over the age of 18, who has a physical disability can request a vocational assessment through the Rehabilitation Centre in Ottawa.

Private agencies that can also provide a vocational assessment include: (in Ottawa):

How can I obtain an application for an Accessible Parking Permit?

For further information and to apply, please visit the following website: Accessible parking permit

You can also pick up an application at any Driver and Vehicle Licence Issuing Office or request an application by mail from:

Service Ontario
License Renewals Unit
P.O. Box 9800
Kingston, ON
K7L 5N8

What are the transportation options to appointments/post-secondary institutions?

For Ottawa only:

If your child has a physical disability, you can apply to Para Transpo (only in Ottawa), please visit their website for further information:  

Depending on your child's needs, you may also be able to obtain an attendant card for OC Transpo (only in Ottawa); please visit the following website for further information: Application for Para Transpo Companions-Attendants.pdf

Private taxi companies and accessible taxi are also available. Here are some options:

For Ottawa:

  • Blueline taxi
  • West Way taxi

In Prescott Russell:

Here are other links that may be helpful for this transition, please note that these documents are provided by other centers or services.

Community Options Guide: This guide is provided by Service coordination. It lists all organizations in the Ottawa area servicing youth with disabilities. They identify organizations which are MCSS Funded as well as Community Programs.

Champlain Health Line: This page offers a directory of services which support people living with intellectual or physical disabilities.

Tools for Transition