How would you use $125,000 to provide more respite for those in need?

iA Financial Group will donate over $300,000 to different charities.

Voting open until November 29

The winner will be announced on

December 12, 2019

One major donation of $125,000 2 donations of $50,000 each and 7 more of $10,000 each

We are excited to announce the launch of the third edition of our annual contest. This time our contest will support Canadian charities working in the health, education or social services sectors who, among other services, provide respite for families, loved ones and others who need it.

Ten charities have been selected as finalists, and now it’s up to you to vote for the projects you find the most inspiring.

The charity with the most votes will receive a donation of $125,000, second and third place will receive donations of $50,000 and the seven others will receive donations of $10,000. These donations will help the charities go further in providing respite!

Vote for your top choice!

Vote for your two favourite proposals!

Fill out the form below and indicate, in order of preference, your two favourite projects.

1. Your personal information

2. Your choices

Massey Centre

Respite for Teen Moms

Imagine being 16 years old and having a baby. Now try raising that baby 24/7 without any family support while trying to finish high school and finding a place to live. That’s the reality for most of the adolescent mothers supported by Massey Centre.

This donation will allow us to hire a respite volunteer coordinator, who will recruit, screen, train and organize respite volunteers for the young moms we serve. They will give the young moms a break to rest, do homework and take some time for themselves.

Charity’s mission

Massey Centre is a client-centred infant and early childhood mental health charity. We serve two main community-based groups of clients: vulnerable pregnant and parenting adolescents and their children, and families and caregivers from the local community. Our goal is to improve their lives through integrated evidence-informed practice, education and transitional supports.

Ronald McDonald House Toronto

Respite at Sick Kids

Your donation would go towards providing a Family Room space at Sick Kids for families to get some respite, with a place to rest and retreat just steps away from where their sick child is being treated. Family Rooms have lounge space, a kitchenette stocked with tea, coffee and snacks and washrooms with a shower, laundry facilities and a sleep room with seven sleeping pods. You would provide family members a place, open 24 hours a day, to recharge and refocus for the potentially difficult hours and days ahead.

Charity’s mission

We exist to greatly improve the lives of families going through one of life’s most painful challenges—having a child with a life-threatening illness. We provide respite for families from across Ontario and all parts of Canada. Our House in Toronto, as well as our family rooms at places like Sick Kids, provide much-needed respite from the unbelievable challenges of critical care.

Alberta AdaptAbilities Association

Respite to Communities

We support over 230 unique individuals on a monthly basis in our 3 respite centres. Our 2019 summer camp program served close to 800 participants and overall, AdaptAbilities has supported over 2,000 children, teens and young adults with visible and invisible disabilities. The need for respite services with a human rights and pan-disability approach is significant.

Our respite centres are currently centralized around the Edmonton core. A donation of $125,000 will help us expand to 5 new satellite locations around the Edmonton area to address the unmet demand for our services, especially serving families in their communities.

Charity’s mission

AdaptAbilities helps individuals with special needs develop essential life skills they need to grow, succeed and belong. We are creating success for life. Our human rights approach not only focuses on our participants but also on their families who have altered their work-life balance to become caregivers.

We strive to be the leading provider of enhanced respite care in Alberta.

Jennifer Ashleigh Children’s Charity

Double Our Respite Care!

Parents of children with serious illnesses and complex conditions are everyday heroes who sometimes spend 24 hours a day caring for their child.

Last year, we were honoured to provide support to 116 families for the cost of ongoing respite care for their child. Unfortunately, this only equates to about 77 hours per family for the entire year—or just 6.5 hours per month.

With a donation of $125,000 from iA Financial Group, you would almost DOUBLE the amount of respite care we can provide to each family that will apply for our support in 2020.

Charity’s mission

Our mission is to improve the quality of life for children in Ontario with serious illnesses and life-altering conditions, as well as their families. We provide financial support to Ontario families with limited incomes for costs related to their child’s treatment and care.

Through our Respite Care Program, we provide financial support to parents and primary caregivers for the cost of ongoing respite care, providing them with a much needed mental and physical break.

Centre d’aide aux proches aidants des Basques

Flexible and adapted respite

Family caregivers are everyday heroes. Since 2011, our organization has taken up the mission of easing their daily lives through a variety of services. We have developed an innovative respite service to help family caregivers find respite at home in the evening and on weekends. Unfortunately, our modest financial capacity forces us to limit the number of hours for some people who might be in great need. A donation of $125,000 would allow us to enhance our in-home respite service and develop a new out-of-home program.

Charity’s mission

The mission of the Centre d’aide aux proches aidants des Basques is to ease the daily lives of family caregivers so that they can continue helping the care recipient. This is the only organization in the Lower Saint-Lawrence whose mission is specifically dedicated to supporting family caregivers. The organization works with all family caregivers, regardless of the age or medical condition of the care recipient.

Prince Edward Island Association for Community Living

Caregiver Connection

Folks who care for a loved one with an intellectual disability tend to ignore or deny much of the stress they feel in their day-to-day lives, which often leads to issues with their own health. Research has pointed to the need to assist families and individuals who are caring for a loved one with an intellectual disability. We want to fill that need. A $125,000 donation would allow PEIACL to conduct “Caregiver Connection: A Family Respite Weekend” multiple times over the next two years, covering the costs associated with venue rental, meals, hiring respite workers and bringing in experts.

Charity’s mission

The Prince Edward Island Association for Community Living (PEIACL) is a family-based association empowering people with intellectual disabilities and their families to lead the way in advancing inclusion in their own lives and in their communities. We do this by sharing information, fostering leadership for inclusion, facilitating networking, connecting people and opportunities and promoting rights and values in keeping with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation

Dementia Caregiver Clinic

A $125,000 donation will provide partial Year 1 operating funds for the pilot project of an assessment and treatment clinic to support the needs of high-risk caregivers who are not being adequately supported by our health care system. Its goals are to decrease heightened levels of caregiver distress and enhance competency and sense of mastery in order to effectively and safely care for family members with dementia. In order to remove barriers that prevent caregivers from receiving the support they need, concurrent respite for their family member with dementia will be coordinated and provided.

Charity’s mission

Inspiring donors. Transforming healthcare. Saving lives. We are Vancouver Coastal Health’s (VCH) primary philanthropic partner, raising funds for specialized adult health services and research for all British Columbians. Patients across BC with the most serious and most complex conditions come and receive care at VCH.

Battlefords Boys & Girls Club

BBGC Drop-In Program

Not all young people have the same opportunities to flourish. Located on Treaty 6 Territory, many of the families accessing our services lack the resources and support they need to be successful in parenting/caregiving. At the Battlefords Boys & Girls Club (BBGC), we help meet the needs of children and youth in our community through our Drop-In Program, offered 6 days/week. A great example of respite. In addition to quality educational and recreational programming, we provide nutritious food, a safe and welcoming space, positive role models and emotional support. We rely heavily on donations such as these to deliver services to over 500 members. With this donation, the impact we can have is significant and we can support more people! Some of our members would otherwise not have access to nutrition or a safe place where they are engaged in pro-social activities with positive adult role models outside of school.

Charity’s mission

Our mission is to provide a safe place where children and youth can experience new opportunities, overcome barriers, build positive relationships and develop confidence and skills for life. The Battlefords Boys and Girls Club was established in 1976 to provide for the recreational, cultural, education and social needs of all children 5–14 years of age in our community. Great Futures Start Here!

Association Pour L’intégration Sociale (Quebec City region)

OASIS+ for innovative respite

OASIS+ is a respite offering that matches Social Work or Occupational Therapy students with families of people with an intellectual disability or autism spectrum disorder. OASIS+ gives parents a flexible and simple in-home respite solution that includes support for activities, at-home assistance or babysitting. This solution allows future professionals to gain experience with these people and understand their family reality. Through this new service, AISQ aims to ease parents’ burden and improve the quality of family life.

Charity’s mission

The AISQ’s mission is to promote the well-being and quality of life of people with intellectual disabilities and their loved ones, protect their interests, defend their rights and create living conditions that meet their needs.

Through its action, it contributes to the development of an inclusive and kind society in which people with intellectual disabilities can fully participate.

Le Phare Enfants et Familles

A Light in the Storm

A donation of $125,000 will help us meet the needs of families with children in pediatric palliative care who live outside the geographic coverage of the current services offered by the Lighthouse and its partners.

The donation will help us provide weekly local respite services to families in Outaouais, Estrie, Mauricie, Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Gaspésie.

Through its collaboration with volunteer centres, its digital platform and telepresence technologies, the Lighthouse will select, train and support competent volunteers who are matched with the families of children with life-threatening illnesses.

Charity’s mission

The Phare Enfants et Familles provides respite to families of children with life-threatening illnesses needing pediatric palliative care. The respite service is offered weekly in the family home or for a few consecutive days at the Maison André-Gratton in Montreal. Volunteers involved in the program entertain and care for the children to give parents and siblings a quality respite with peace of mind.

Vote for your two favourite proposals!


  • Submission period September 16th to October 16th (closed)
  • Selection by the juryof the ten finalists October 17th to October 31st (closed)
  • Announcement of the ten finalists and public vote for their top two charities November 1st to 29th
  • Announcementof the amounts donated to the winners December 12th

Our objective

Support charities that offer respite services that directly help Canadians. The projects submitted could even influence other charities across the country to follow in their footsteps.

Selection criteria

To be eligible to enter, organizations had to meet the following criteria:

  • Be registered with the Canada Revenue Agency
  • Operate in the health, education or social services sectors
  • Aim to improve Canadians’ quality of life
  • Among other services, provide respite for families, loved ones and others who need it
  • Provide assistance to individuals – we are not looking for organizations that help other organizations
  • Demonstrate that the donation would be used for concrete initiatives starting in 2021 at the latest

Contest rules (PDF)

We will not give donations to the following causes and activities:

  • Religious
  • Political
  • Advocacy
  • Student travel and internships
  • Graduate yearbooks
  • Amateur or professional sports
  • Retiree, social or sporting clubs
  • Organizations operating outside Canada
See exclusions