Single mothers are often faced with many challenges when it comes to providing for their children. For starters, living in a one-income household means having to stretch the budget to cover all of the essential costs. If there’s an emergency, such as a medical expense, it can be even more challenging. Plus, the high cost of living, including rising rent costs and soaring grocery bills makes it difficult to save.
Fortunately, there are a number of emergency funding resources available in Canada designed to assist single parents in need. Staying informed on the latest funding programs is the first step towards getting support. If you’re a single mother seeking financial aid in Canada, read on to learn how you may qualify for rapid response funding.
The Reality of Single Parenthood in Canada
Making ends meet as a single parent isn’t easy. Inflation and food insecurity are common concerns for many Canadians, and living as a single mother can mean more money is needed to get by. A 2023 Global News report found that more single mothers struggle with rising food costs.
The report also noted that dual-income households are having issues with rising living costs, proving the strain is even more intense for parents doing it solo. Single mothers also face other obstacles. Affordable childcare is another cause for concern, and even with subsidised rates, it’s difficult to find the right option.
Daycare centres often come with long wait lists, which could mean months before a suitable placement is found. This can be especially difficult for parents in rural areas with fewer resources. In turn, this can lead to missed shifts or lack of employment altogether.
Emergency Relief for Single Mothers
The importance of emergency relief for single mothers cannot be understated. Whether you’re employed, unable to work, or a stay-at-home parent, rapid relief funding can help support a one-income household by:
Covering basic necessities such as childcare, transportation, rent and other household expenses.
Paying for essential medical costs that are not covered by insurance.
Providing financial support for any other unexpected expense like a household or medical emergency.
Government Grants & Programs
Whether you live in a low-income household or are part of a single-parent family, you can learn about the various government grants and programs available to support you.
Canadian Child Benefit (CCB)
Perhaps the most well-known benefit for mothers in Canada, the Canadian Child Benefit (CCB), is available to parents of one or more children who are under the age of 18. This benefit is tax-free cash payment based on income, number of children, ages and marital status. The CCB is paid out monthly to the legal custodial parent or guardian of the child(ren).You can apply for the CCB as soon as any of these events happen:
Your baby is born.
A child starts to live with you after a period of living elsewhere.
You’re granted custody of a child.
You or your spouse or common law partner begin to meet the criteria and become eligible.
The GST/HST credit provides financial assistance to residents of Canada (both individuals and families) who earn low or modest incomes. Many single mothers have benefited from this credit. It is paid out as a tax-free quarterly payment to help offset the cost of GST and HST.
In most cases, there is no formal application for the GST/HST credit. All you have to do to receive this credit each year is to file your taxes, even if you have no income to report. You can also visit the Government of Canada’s website to learn more about specific eligibility requirements for the GST/HST credit.
EI Family Supplement
The employment insurance (EI) family benefit is designed to help low-income families supplement their income while receiving EI benefits. You are eligible to receive the EI family supplement benefit if you:
Are an EI claimant.
Have one or more children living within your household (under 18).
Receive the Canadian Child Benefit.
Have an annual family net income of less than or equal to $25,921.
Canada Dental Benefit
If you earn less than $90,000 (combined household income) per year, your children are under 12, and you do not have private dental insurance, you can apply to receive a tax-free amount between $130 and $650 to cover the cost of dental care for your child. You can estimate your benefit amount using this online benefits calculator provided by the government of Canada.
You can apply for a maximum of two payments for each eligible child. If you have more than one eligible child, you can apply for them separately or at the same time. The last day you can apply is Sunday, June 30, 2024.
Canada Education Savings Grant
To receive the Canada Education Savings Grant, you’ll need to register for your child’s Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). The government adds 20 cents on every dollar you contribute, up to a maximum of $500 on an annual contribution of $2,500. Once your child enters post-secondary education, the money can be used to help pay for either full-time or part-time studies.
In addition to government programs and grants, there are many non-profit organizations and charities that provide single parent support in Canada. The Salvation Army, for example, hosts a program called the Housing Stability Bank, which provides emergency financial assistance to cover rent or utility bills.
Programs like this typically focus on supporting displaced individuals and families, but you may also qualify if you’ve been affected by an emergency like a natural disaster, or if you’ve been affected by domestic abuse. Single mothers are typically eligible for support through various non-government charitable organizations.
Single parents in Canada can also take advantage of local food aid programs. Your local food bank can help you with daily expenses by providing groceries and personal hygiene items. Churches, mosques and other religious centres offer fresh produce, meals, and non-perishable food and hygiene items to those facing financial hardship.
Even if you need an extra hand at managing your finances, you can reach out to a local financial advisor to get you on the right track to managing your household budget. While it can be difficult to juggle work, childcare, and other responsibilities, consulting a financial expert may be just what you need.
Steps to Accessing Emergency Funding
There’s a range of financial aid options designed for single mothers in Canada. And while it can be overwhelming to know which is right for you, you should look at government programs and non-profit organizations, first.
These are not the only types of rapid relief for single mothers. Another way to get help with expenses is to apply for a short-term loan from iCash. No matter how much income you make, whether you collect employment insurance or are a single parent in Canada receiving child benefits, you can get up to $1,500 funded instantly.
To apply for an iCash loan to help cover anything from daily essentials to emergency costs, simply follow the easy three-step process:
1. Apply Online
After answering a few basic questions, you can get approved in as little as two minutes. Simply grab your laptop, tablet, or smartphone to start the application process online or through the iCash mobile app.
2. Get Instant Approval
The approval process is easy and almost guaranteed - 9/10 of iCash applications are approved regardless of their credit history or income source.
3. Get Funded 24/7
After receiving instant approval, you’ll be sent an e-Transfer within 2 minutes of signing your agreement. The process is streamlined to ensure you get funded as quickly as possible, no matter the time of day.New to iCash? See why thousands of single mothers in Canada choose this online lending service as a source of emergency funding.
Financial Aid for Single Mothers is Here
Canadian emergency funding programs and non-profit organizations offer a number of financial aid options for single moms. Another way to get help is to seek a local financial advisor or an alternative lender online to see what other financial avenues you can explore. Whichever option you choose, you’ll be well on your way to getting the help you need, so that you can focus on enjoying the important moments with your children.