How Can We Help You


Information, Counselling and Referral

I need to talk to someone about counselling, crisis situations, life challenges, my children.

What does an Intake Worker do?

An Intake Worker meets with individuals and families to evaluate their needs and refer them to the appropriate services in the community.  They also offer short-term and crisis counseling, attend community events and advocate on behalf of their clients.

What can I talk about with an Intake Worker?

You can talk with an Intake Worker about any subject that you desire.  No subject matter is off limits.  Examples of subjects: housing, employment, GLBT, immigration, abuse, counseling, mental health, budgeting, arrears, clothing, food, medical, furniture, income taxes, workshop, suicide, crisis, etc… An Intake Worker can assess the situation and determine the appropriate resources in the community. Please make your request, and we can determine if we can assist or find an organization who can!

How does the OCCRC define crisis?

A crisis is defined by the OCCRC as circumstances or situations that go beyond an individual’s capacity to resolve on their own without support. An individual or family can meet with an Intake Worker to discuss their crisis situation and see what assistance can be provided and the appropriate services that can be useful.

Who can see an Intake Worker?

Generally, an Intake Worker works with individuals over 16 years of age.  Families seeking services for individuals under 16 years of age can meet with an Intake Worker to determine what services are appropriate in the community.  Certain programs located within the OCCRC require individuals and families to meet with and Intake Worker to determine eligibility and obtain a referral to these programs.

What is your catchment area and can exceptions be made?

The OCCRC catchment area is East of Champlain St. to the boundaries of Prescott-Russell.  Intake Workers determine your catchment area based on your postal code in order to best assist you.  Certain programs can only serve clients in their catchment area to ensure that all community members’ needs are met.  These programs include, but not limited to, the food bank, income taxes, school supplies, etc.

How is low-income defined at the OCCRC and must I be low-income to obtain services at the OCCRC?

The OCCRC uses the Low-Income Cut-Off (LICO) Scale published by Statistics Canada every year to determine low-income eligibility. Certain programs, such as the food bank, income taxes and school supplies are based on income, whereas others, such as counseling, referrals, Ontario Early Years Centre, etc., have no financial criteria.

Are your Intake Workers affiliated with Children’s Aid Society (CAS) or Ontario Works (OW)?

No, the Intake Workers at the OCCRC are NOT affiliated with either CAS or OW.  They offer a neutral, unbiased opportunity for individuals to express themselves and explain their frustrations.  The OCCRC Intake Workers work with individuals and community agencies to come to resolution when disputes occur.  The Intake Workers advocate on behalf of their clients and the Orléans-Cumberland Community.

My doctor wants me to meet with a psychiatrist or psychologist to discuss my ongoing issues, can I come to the OCCRC for these services?

The OCCRC does not offer the services of psychiatrists nor psychologists at this time.  The Intake Workers can offer up to 6 sessions of counseling to assist individuals with their ongoing issues.  Individuals looking for longer sessions are referred to community partner agencies like Catholic Family Services, Women and Violence, etc. Please note that these sessions are with a social worker or counselor.

Early Years Centre

I want to participate in playgroups for children and workshops for parents

What do I need to bring to a playgroup?

The EYC is a nut-free and scent-free environment. Make sure to avoid scented products when visiting the centre. You can bring a nut-free, nutritional snack for your child(ren). During Fall and Winter, indoor shoes for both adults and children are required.

How can I register to participate in a workshop?

You can register by calling a Parent Resource worker at (613) 830-4357, during your next visit, or by email.

I am looking for information regarding my child’s development, who do I contact?

You can contact a Parent Resource Worker by telephone, in person or by email.  I will be a pleasure to answer your questions and/ or refer you to the right association.

Can I borrow toys for my child?

We have a free toy lending library service at the Early Years Centre. You may borrow toys, Dvds, Cds and resource books for 2 weeks.  The toy lending library hours are indicated on our schedule.

I have a 2 year old and a 7 year old child. Can I attend the playgroup with my 2 children?

Unfortunately our services are for children 6 years and under. We cannot accept children 7 years of age and over, in our programs. If you are seeking services for children 7 years of age or older, contact the child and youth program at the Orleans Cumberland Community Resource Centre.

Volunteer Program

I want to become a volunteer at the resource centre

What is the process to become a volunteer?

An interview is set up and he/she will learn about the Centre’s programs and services, its mission in the community and available volunteer positions. The Volunteer Program Coordinator will discuss your interests, skills and availability in order to find a good match. Candidates will be required to submit a police records check. The OCCRC will accept a current one for up to 12 months. A letter will be provided by the OCCRC to waive the fee for the police records check. Candidates will need to provide 2 references: details will be discussed during the interview. Acceptance to the Centre will be determined by the outcome of the screening process.

How long does the process take before I can begin volunteering?

The average time is 3 weeks to 2 months; it depends on when the Volunteer Program receives the police records check.

When does the OCCRC do volunteer recruitment?

The Volunteer Program recruits new volunteers throughout the year for specific positions, but generally has 2 annual periods of recruitment; from September to November and from February to May.

What if all the volunteer positions are filled?

Certain programs are in high demand such as the Food Program, therefore new volunteers want to support that program. Your name will be added to the waiting list and when a position becomes vacant, the Coordinator will call you and offer you the position.

Does the OCCRC accept youth for their 40 hours high school community service requirements?

Youth 13 years of age and up can fill a volunteer placement with the Centre depending on the positions available. Youth 13 to 15 years of age need to be accompanied by an adult while performing their volunteer duties. Accompanying adults must comply with all the volunteering policies and procedures.

Does the OCCRC provide training?

Yes we provide orientation, on the job training, ongoing training throughout the volunteer placement.

If volunteering is not the right fit, what else is available?

Make a donation – monetary donations are a great way to support our Centre. Please call (613) 830-4357 to speak with the Fundraising Coordinator or check out the Fundraising & Promotion Program.

How long will I have to commit for?

Depending on the volunteer position, we usually ask for a six-month commitment. Successful matches will continue past that point. As a volunteer you are free to leave whenever you like. Talk it through with the Volunteer Program Coordinator and give us advance notice of your intentions. Regular volunteered hours range from 2–4 hours weekly.

Contact North

I want to study online – take distance education.

What is Contact North | Contact Nord?

Ontario’s Distance Education and Training Network, Contact North | Contact Nord provides a comprehensive set of services to students and Ontario’s publicly assisted colleges, universities, school boards, literacy, basic skills and other training providers (education and training providers). Contact North |Contact Nord is funded by the Ontario government.

What services does Contact North | Contact Nord provide to students?

We support students and prospective students to take distance education and online courses and programs from Ontario’s public education and training providers. We provide the following services:

  • 112 Online Learning Centres – including  the centre in Orléans
  • Services in English and French
  • 24/7 Access to Information via
  • Information and Assistance with the Registration Process
  • Support and Encouragement
  • Referrals to Community and Employment Agencies
  • Exam Invigilation and Attendance Monitoring
  • Technical Support
  • Distance Education Technologies
  • Referrals to Academic Advising and Counselling

What kind of programs and courses are available?

The education and training partners offer a wide range of online programming, from academic upgrading, completion of high school, college certificates and diplomas, university degrees, as well as post graduate programs at the Masters level. We can assist you in finding the program or course you are looking for.

Youth Services Bureau

I feel like I can’t handle my life right now, but I’m not sure if it’s right to call my situation a “crisis” or an “emergency.” How bad do things have to be to call the Crisis Line?

There is no fixed definition of an emergency or a crisis.  Some clients have called our crisis line for reasons such as feeling scared, sad and alone, unable to cope, confusion about their own feelings or impulses and worries about a loved one.  If it feels like a crisis to you, we encourage you to call the 24/7 Crisis Line to speak to one of our crisis counsellors.

 24/7 Crisis Line: 

In Ottawa: 613-260-2360
Toll-free: 1-877-377-7775

I feel there is something wrong in my teenager’s life, but can’t get a conversation going on the subject. What should I do?

YSB has a Youth Mental Health Walk-In Clinic located at 2301 Carling Avenue.  Single session and short term counselling are accessible every Tuesday and Thursdays from 12-8pm (the last appointment is at 6pm).  For additional information, please call 613-562-3004.

Another counselling option is YSB Youth and Family Counselling Services (YFCS).  YFCS offer youth (ages 12 to 17) and their families the opportunity to address a variety of concerns affecting their lives through long-term individual and/or family counselling. For additional information, please call 613-830-4357×147.

I am struggling with my teen’s behaviours but my teen refuses to participate in counselling. What can I do in this situation?

If you are unsure of what to do, we encourage you to call the 24/7 Crisis Line or drop by the Youth Mental Health Walk-In Clinic, which support youth and their parents. We can provide you with tips and recommendations on how to engage your teen in conversation and direct you to a range of support services that could benefit you and your family at YSB and/or in the community.

My child is in counselling at YSB. Are meetings confidential or will the counsellor share what is discussed with me?

Youth aged 12 and older can receive private and confidential counselling services without a parent’s consent.  Meetings are confidential unless the youth waives the right to privacy and consents to information being shared.  However, if a youth tells a counsellor that somebody under the age of 16 is being hurt or that they are thinking about self-harm or harming others, safety outweighs rights to privacy.  The youth’s guardian and/or caregiver will be contacted.

What will it cost me to get help from YSB.

YSB services are free.

Where are the YSB offices located? Where can I meet a counsellor?

YSB offices and counsellors are located across the city.  Our office in Orleans is located at 240 Centrum Blvd in the Orleans Cumberland Community Resources Center.  For additional information, please call our head office at 613-729-1000, or the crisis line at 613-260-2360.

I know someone who could benefit from YSB services.  How do I make a referral?

YSB does not approach youth and their families without their written or expressed consent.  Rather, our services are available to those who reach out to us for help. Depending on which programs and services you feel are appropriate, you can ask or support a youth to call one of our program coordinators or our 24/7 Crisis Line.  

Community Services613-241-7788
Youth Employment
Mental Health Services
Youth Justice Services
Youth Engagement

Are all YSB services offered in English and French? Are the programs offered in any other languages?

YSB services are offered in both English and French. When possible, the support of an interpreter is an alternate option.

First Words

I’m worried about my child’s speech and/or language development.

When should I consult First Words?

It is never too early, nor too late, to refer to First words.  It is better to treat a speech or language problem early. Your child will have more time to develop the skills needed to make friends, to socialize and to later, learn to write and read.  Any child – independently of their age, whether they are 6 months, 18 months or 3 years of age – can have a speech or language problem.  The sooner a problem is discovered, the sooner we can begin to do something to help.

I’m worried about my child’s speech and/or language development.  What should I do to access First words services?

Bring your child (age 0 to eligibility for Senior Kindergarten) to a First Words Screening Clinic. They are free, don’t require an appointment and are open to families who live in Ottawa.  For more information:

  • Click here for a list of upcoming screening clinics and related information.
  • Call Ottawa Public Health at (613) 580-6744 extension 28020 and speak to a Public Health Nurse.
  • If you are unable to attend any screening clinic, please call the First Words Intake office at (613) 737-7600 extension 2500 to discuss a self-referral.

 How do babies learn to talk?

  • Talk to your baby throughout the day. Talk about what you are doing and show her what you are doing (e.g.: touch their arm. Say “I am washing your arm. This is your arm.”)
  • Talk to your baby in a high pitch and use a lot of intonation. Shorten and simplify your words and sentences. Speak more slowly. Repeat the same phrases over and over. Use facial expressions.
  • Babble with your child. Teach your child real words by modeling real words.  Avoid using baby words (e.g.: “baba” for “bottle” or “daw-daw” for “dog”). Teach your child words that most other people will understand.
  • Sing songs and nursery rhymes.
  • Play simple games like “peek-a-boo” and ask “where’s mom?”. Say words like “on”, “off”, “hi”, “bye”, “more”.

Show your child picture books and talk about what you see.

Why should children learn their first language?

When children have a strong first language base, they learn a second language more easily.

They also do better at school with reading and writing.

When should a child learn a second language?

  • “One parent – one language”: One parent speaks one language to the child; the other parent speaks the other language to the child.
  • “One place – one language”: One language is spoken at home; the other at daycare or at school.
  • “One activity – one language”: One language is spoken at bath time; the other is spoken during outdoor play or at a community activity.

Can learning two languages cause a delay or confuse my child?

No. A child’s brain can learn more than one language. All over the world, children learn to speak two languages with success while growing up. In fact, children learning two languages learn to speak at the same rate as other children. There is no proof that children with a speech or a language delay will be more delayed if they hear two languages. However, they will have the same speech and language difficulties in both languages. For more information, find a printable version of this document here.

What can I do to help my child develop his speech and language skills?

  • Talk to your child throughout the day, every day. Children who hear a lot of language will develop more language. Talk about the things you and your child do, see and hear together. Say the names of objects and actions. Repeat the words often. Take turn listening and talking.
  • Read to your child every day. Children that are read to often and from an early age do better in school than those who are not read to.  Read the same books over and over again to teach new words. Keep reading materials around the house (comic books, magazines, library books).
  • Sing with your child.  Songs help children make sounds, talk, move, listen, follow directions and remember new words. Singing can be done anywhere – in the car, in the bath, on a walk.
  • Play together – You are the best toy in the house. Be playful! Use an excited voice, fun words (e.g. “weee!”), gestures and facial expressions to catch his attention.  When playing,  help your child pay attention to you, take turns and learn new words.
  • Visit for more practical, concrete resources

Fundraising and Promotions

I want to be involved in fundraising activities.

I want to help with fundraising activities but don’t know where to start?

Join us for one of our community events.

I would like to host a community event to help – where do I start?

We have a package for that – see our Fundraising program for how we can help you begin.

Can I help in organizing one or more community events?

Yes – click here for a current list of all upcoming community and Centre events you may wish to help organize.

Employment Ontario

I need help to find a job.

When are you open?

Monday to Friday: 8:30 am to 4 pm

Where are you located?

240 Centrum boulevard, unit 105 in Orleans, right beside the Subway restaurant.

Do I need to make an appointment?

No, no appointment is necessary. Any questions please call 613-741-9042 or email

Will you get me a job?

We will work with you to make sure that you have an effective resume in order to secure an interview. We also help you develop your interviewing skills and provide you with other job searching assistance. We are not a temporary employment agency.

What age range do you serve?

All ages – everyone is welcome to use our Resource Room which contains labour market information, community and educational resources as well as assistance from our staff.

What buses go there?

OC Transpo buses #’s 135, 136 and 137. We also have plenty of free parking.

Do you offer workshops?

At this point, our workshops include:

  • Career Discovery
  • Effective Job Search
  • Interview Preparation
  • WHMIS – online training
  • Social Media for the Job Search
  • Introduction to Apprenticeship
  • Online Application Clinic
  • Resume Clinic