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The Children’s Aid Foundation Scholarship Deadline for the 2017-18 academic year has now passed.
In progress scholarships applications that were not submitted prior to the deadline will be considered for other educational supports upon submission.
If you have missed the deadline but would still like to be considered for supports, please check back to the website in March for Bursary Applications. If you have any questions regarding the scholarship process please direct inquiries to Simon Sutherland at All official transcripts and references from child protection workers are due at the Foundation no later than March 8th, 2017 at 5pm.
The Children’s Aid Foundation funds a number of scholarships, bursaries and awards for students attending college or university.

Scholarships are awarded through an annual competitive process and decisions are made by the Foundation’s Award Committee. Scholarships for the 2017-2018 year range from $2,500 to $5,000.

New for 2017-2018 

In an effort to simplify the application process, all applicants will complete the same application form (there will no longer be separate “New” or “Renewal” forms). It is in the best interest of all applicants to submit all requirements well in advance of the deadline of Monday, February 27th at 5:00 pm.

Eligibility Criteria

Funding is available to students demonstrating both financial need and the potential to succeed in their program of study.  To meet the eligibility criteria, a student must be:

  • A current Crown (permanent) Ward, or have been a Crown (permanent) Ward
  • Under 26 years of age at the start of their current school program, or under 30 if the student has received Foundation funding for the same program in previous years
  • Registered at or planning to attend a recognized post-secondary institution

WHO CAN APPLY?   Student meeting the eligibility criteria, and who will be attending school full-time for two semesters within one academic year (September-August).

WHEN DO I APPLY?   Online scholarship application forms are due on Monday, February 27, 2017, and supporting documentation must be received at the Children’s Aid Foundation office no later than Wednesday, March 8, 2017.  Successful applicants will be notified in late June or July, and scholarships are presented at our annual Recognition Night event.

For the online social worker reference, please see the button below:

Yes. As of 2017-2018 there will no longer be new and renewal applications. Every applicant must submit a new application every year.

A transcript is a record of all of your academic achievement (your grades) that is issued by your school. If you have just graduated high school, or are planning to in the current school year, then you should contact your school’s office. If you are currently enrolled in a post-secondary school then you should either contact your school’s registrar’s office or order your transcript through your online student portal.

No. The Award Committee cannot review an application that does not include a recent transcript. Your application will be assessed using your marks to date. If the Foundation doesn’t receive a transcript by 5 pm on Wednesday, 8 March, 2017, your application will not be considered. Any student who submits a complete application before the deadline may also provide their updated final marks at the end of the semester if they wish.

We ask all students to reapply each year. If you received a notification that you were awarded a scholarship last year, but then did not attend school, your award would have been reallocated to another student.

No. The Children’s Aid Foundation is an independent, non-governmental organization that raises funds from individuals, corporations and other foundations. If you receive a scholarship or bursary from the Children’s Aid Foundation, you will not be required to pay it back. The Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) is run by the provincial government, and you will be required to pay back at least some of this funding. Other provincial governments have comparable programs. To access this funding, you will need to apply through the website of your provincial government, or through the Financial Aid office at your school.

If you have applied to a program but have not yet been accepted, or if you think there’s a possibility that you will be attending school, you should apply for a scholarship. We will get in touch with you in the summer to confirm that you’re still planning on attending school, and if your plans have changed we can allocate your award to another deserving student. You will not be penalized if you apply for a scholarship and do not attend school, and it will give you the chance to be considered for larger awards.

Yes! Children’s Aid Foundation scholarships are based on a combination of academic achievement, financial need, individual attributes, personal contribution and potential for success in your chosen field. Your best bet is to answer the questions as completely and thoughtfully as possible so that the Award Committee can make an informed decision.

In order to receive a Children’s Aid Foundation scholarship, you must be attending a post-secondary school that has been recognized and authorized by the provincial or territorial government as having the authority to grant academic credentials (such as a degree, diploma or certificate). This includes public universities and colleges, and some registered private career colleges. If you are unsure of whether your program will qualify, please visit a government website or directory, or contact the Foundation.

Yes. The Children’s Aid Foundation accepts applications from across Canada from applicants meeting the eligibility criteria. If you are receiving or have applied for other awards (eg. from your home agency, your school, Ken Dryden Scholarship, Clark Award) you must make note of this on your Children’s Aid Foundation scholarship application.

The social worker reference form provides important information about your background, and it also confirms the dates that you were in care. We would ask that you contact your child welfare agency to see if someone would be willing to complete this requirement. If your home agency cannot complete the entire form, please have them provide a letter stating the dates of your wardship, and contact the Foundation to discuss your options in terms of who would be a suitable alternative to provide a detailed reference to support your application.

The most common reason is that you have not filled in all required fields. Please check through your application to make sure you have completed all of the fields marked with a red asterisk (*). If you are still having difficulty, please send a detailed e-mail to, including a detailed description of your problem and the error message you are receiving, and we will respond when possible.

Scholarship applications are reviewed by Children’s Aid Foundation staff to ensure that applicants meet the eligibility criteria, but the applications are scored by our Award Committee. This Award Committee is made up of 10-12 friends of the Foundation, including Board members, an alumni of the scholarship program, a foster parent representative, and community members. Scholarship applications are scored on Individual Attributes (eg. personal and academic challenges and progress), Academic Achievement (eg. high grades and/or significant gains despite individual limitations), Personal Contribution (eg. strengths and coping skills demonstrated in personal life and commitments outside of school), Potential for Success (eg. whether goals are clear and realistic) and Financial Need.

Awards are usually announced in July. Before the awards are finalized, the Foundation will contact you to confirm that you are still planning on attending school in the fall, so please let us know if your e-mail address changes. If we cannot get in touch with you, your award may be reallocated to another student.

Foundation funds are to assist with the cost of your post-secondary education, but even the largest award will likely not cover your full expenses. If you do not have the funds available to pay your tuition you need to apply for your provincial student assistance program (eg. Ontario Student Assistance Progam). Once you have been approved for Student Assistance, your school will allow you to pay a small deferral fee until your loan comes through. If you have been approved for an award, the Foundation may be able to advance up to $500 for this purpose if you provide documentation. It can take 3-4 weeks for the Foundation to process requests for payment, so please contact us well in advance if you need to make special arrangements.

The Children’s Aid Foundation usually provides funds only once students are enrolled in school. Crown Wards in Ontario may be eligible for the Ontario Crown Ward Postsecondary Application Fee Reimbursement Program.

If you are selected to receive a scholarship, the Foundation will send you a letter of agreement that indicates when your payments will be issued and which documents you’ll need to submit in order to receive them. The Foundation will provide your scholarship in two payments:

The first payment will be made around the beginning of your first semester (usually at the Recognition Night event in September), after you submit your signed letter of agreement, your proof of registration in first semester (eg. your timetable or tuition deposit receipt), and a thank you letter to your donor.

The second payment will be made around the beginning of your second semester (usually early January), after you submit your online progress report and your proof of registration in second semester (eg. your timetable or tuition deposit receipt).

No, an applicant can only receive one of either a scholarship or a bursary during any academic year. The maximum bursary or scholarship funding that any one applicant can receive during the academic year is $5000.