Are you a parent in Hamilton, Brant, Halton or Niagara area seeking support through the Ontario Autism Program (OAP)? Our dedicated team and specialized programs are here to help your family navigate funding and make the most of the available resources. We have dedicated OAP Case Managers who can help your family create and administer a plan that includes all wraparound supports (groups, individual therapy, parent support, tech, material, and equipment referral letters).  All eligible OAP categories are available under one roof at NowWhat with our collaborative team of professionals.

Understanding the Ontario Autism Program

The Ontario Autism Program is a lifeline for families affected by autism, offering financial support to cover a wide range of services and therapies. It’s designed to ensure that every child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) has access to the resources they need to thrive. However, it can be overwhelming to figure out how and where to use your OAP funds, understand what you are allowed to spend the funding on, track your funding deadlines and submit your expenses for approval.   We can help!

Common questions about OAP include:

1) Does Ontario have financial support for autism?
Absolutely! Ontario recognizes the importance of supporting families affected by autism. The Ontario Autism Program (OAP) provides vital financial assistance to help children with autism access the services they need.

2) How much do you get for OAP Core Funding in Ontario?
The funding amount varies depending on the child’s age and specific needs. Funding is designed to be flexible, ensuring that children receive the appropriate level of support. Our team can help you understand how this funding works and maximize its benefits for your child.  Your initial ‘Determination of Needs’ interview with an OAP Intake Coordinator is designed to determine your child’s level of funding annually, based on their needs.  You can ask for a translator if English is not your first language and you are allowed to have a support person with you during the interview.   The OAP Core Funding annual amounts are as follows:|

Children up to 3 years old
Limited/moderate needs:  $10,900
Extensive needs:  $65,000

Children aged 4 to 9 years old
Limited needs:  $8,900
Moderate needs:  $24,500
Moderate+ needs:  $36,800
Extensive needs:  $65,000

Children aged 10 to 14 years old
Limited needs:  $7,600
Moderate needs:  $18,800
Extensive needs:  $41,400

Teens aged 15 to 17 years old
Limited needs:  $6,600
Moderate needs:  $18,300
Extensive needs:  $31,900

3) How does the Ontario Autism Program Core Funding Work?
Once your child has a diagnosis of Autism, you may apply to the OAP for Core Funding, and join the waitlist for the initial Determination of Needs interview that will determine your child’s level of funding.

If you have received Interim Funding in the past, you should have received a letter or email from the Government of Ontario to create a new account with AccessOAP and transition your child into the new core funding model (if you can’t find this letter or you haven’t received one yet, you can contact the Central Resource Team at the Ministry of Children, Community, and Social Services at or 1-888-444-4530).

OAP Core Funding begins with a thorough assessment of your child’s needs called a Determination of Needs interview (virtual, approximately 4 hours) during which you will talk about all aspects of your child’s needs and development.  After this interview you should receive your funding within a few weeks.  Funding can either be deposited directly into your bank account or, you can opt to be reimbursed as you go.  For larger amounts over $20,000, OAP will split it in half and give you 6 months to spend and reconcile the first half before you can receive the second installment.

4) What if we need support immediately and can’t wait for OAP Core Funding to come through?
If your child is on the waitlist but your family is in a crisis situation (at risk of violence, aggression, running away, sexualized behaviour) you may be able to get extra help sooner, through the OAP’s Urgent Response Services.

  • In Hamilton & surrounding areas (‘East’ Region), URS is coordinated by Contact Brant. You can submit an online self-referral form here.
    Tel: 519-758-8228
    Toll-free: 1-877-613-3422
    www.contactbrant.netLocal areas served: Brant/Brantford, Haldimand/Norfolk, Hamilton, and Niagara
  • In Halton & surrounding areas, URS is coordinated by ErinOak Kids. You can submit an online self-referral form here.   Please note, you will have to select a type of referral first.  Select ‘Start a new referral to OAP URS’ and follow the instructions.
    Tel: 905-855-2690, then press 6
    Toll-free: 1-877-374-6625, then press 6
    Local areas served: Peel, Halton, Wellington, Dufferin, Waterloo

5) What support is available for people with autism?
At NowWhat, we offer a comprehensive range of support services for individuals with autism that can be covered under OAP Core Funding.  When your funding arrives, we can sit down and create a customized wraparound Care Plan with your family, outlining the support and services your child will receive and ensuring it can be covered within the OAP’s restrictions. Our staff will guide you through this process, making it as smooth as possible.  Our programs encompass everything from Behaviour Therapy, OT & SLP early intervention and social skills programs to skill-building workshops to therapeutic learning programs. We focus on enhancing your child’s quality of life and helping them develop essential skills as well as parent coaching and support.  We can support your family all the way from planning effective services to reconciling your expenses in your OAP portal.

At NowWhat, all of our programs are OAP funding-eligible. As you navigate the website, look for references  OAP funding and ask our team for more information!

Local OAP Eligible Support Programs in Hamilton, Ontario

We understand that navigating the Ontario Autism Funding Program can be challenging. That’s why we’re proud to offer support right here in Ancaster, including in-home support within 15kms of the clinic. Our team of experienced professionals is committed to helping your family access and optimize these vital funds.

Personalized Staff Support
Our dedicated staff members are well-versed in the intricacies of the Ontario Autism Funding Program. They will work closely with you to understand your child’s unique needs and create a tailored plan that maximizes the program’s benefits.

Specialized Programs for Families
We go beyond just securing funding. Our programs are designed to put those funds to great use for your family. From early intervention therapies to skill-building workshops, we offer a variety of resources to support your child’s development and enhance their quality of life.

Why Choose NowWhat?

    1. Local Expertise: We are deeply rooted in Hamilton and neighbouring regions, and have a thorough understanding of the community’s needs and resources.
    2. Personalized Approach: At NowWhat, the clinic founders and many of our team members are parents to exceptional children ourselves, and we understand that every child’s needs are unique. Our personalized plans ensure that your child receives the specific support they require.
    3. Transparent Guidance: Navigating the Ontario Autism Funding Program can be complex. We offer transparent guidance and support throughout the entire process from application to submitting expenses for approval.
    4. Comprehensive Services: From speech therapy to social skills development, our programs cover a wide spectrum of services to cater to your child’s needs all in one building, with as little disruption to your family’s life as possible.

Get Started with OAP Today

Unlock the potential of the Ontario Autism Program with funding-eligible support services, readily accessible in Hamilton and surrounding regions. Together, we can help your child thrive and ensure that the funds available are put to great use for your family’s benefit.

Contact us now to schedule a consultation with our dedicated team.  Don’t let autism be a barrier; let’s embrace possibilities together!