We’re happy to report that the COVID-19 Response Program was able to make a positive impact in the lives of 37,677 caregivers, children, and youth across the country in the last year.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada last March, Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada quickly created the COVID-19 Response Program. This emergency fund supported children and families being served by child welfare organizations and youth who have transitioned out of the child welfare system to address financial, emergency, and other needs they experienced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

With a more fulsome report being published in the coming month, here are some initial data points gathered from reporting received from agency partners who received grants to support the populations they serve. 



7,227 families supported

(including 8,395 caregivers and 14,112 children) 

71 child, family, & youth-serving

agencies supported
across Canada

31 grants

to organizations serving
overrepresented Black populations

15,170 children and youth

supported directly 

22 grants

to organizations serving
overrepresented Indigenous communities

10 provinces,

2 territories

Foster Family COVID response

“It has been very difficult navigating through this past year and it has at times felt so overwhelming and isolating to feel like we were on our own. But through the programs you have supported, we have become connected and supported by the association as well as other foster/adoptive families. The gifts were far more than material. So…thank you so very much again. You gave so much more than you think!”

– Foster family* in British Columbia

Young woman COVID Program

“I learned skills that will help me for the rest of my life. I couldn’t have gotten through what I have so far without [virtual] counselling. It will also help me in the day to day situations that will come up in the future.”

– Youth recipient* in Alberta 

Mother and child COVID response

“Some had lost their jobs, others lost their child care and others have had their children taken into care as they were no longer able to cope due to depression and anxiety brought on by the pandemic. All these supports help families to remain together during COVID and lessen some of their daily stress and anxiety. There is far greater need out there than anyone can possibly imagine and we were so thankful to be one of the recipients of the Child & Family COVID-19 Support Fund.”

– Agency partner in Nova Scotia 

*Name and identity are protected.

Read our COVID-19 Response Program Report

Survey results indicated the percentage of families having the following needs addressed with program supports: 

  • 43%of families used support for food and household supplies  
  • 40%of families used support for mental health resources like counselling, therapy, and support groups 
  • 29%of families used support forpersonal needs like toiletries, clothing, and hair care 
  • 21%of families used support forenrichment for well-being including sports, recreation, arts & crafts, and camp 
  • 18%of families used support forchild or infant needs such as diapers, formula, car seats, baby gates, and child care

And the percentage of former youth from care having these 
needs met: 

  • 66%of youth recipients used support for food and household supplies 
  • 53%of youth recipients used support forhousing costs like rent, moving costs, and utilities  
  • 41%of youth recipients used support forpersonal needs like toiletries and clothing  
  • 30%of youth recipients used support fortransportation in the form of bus passes, ride-sharing, and vehicle costs 
  • 21%of youth recipients used support foreducation needs like school supplies, tuition, technology, and tutoring 

Read the COVID-19 Response Program report.

Survey results of families receiving supports indicate: 

  • 68%of recipients experienced improved mental health  
  • 43%of recipients experienced reduced financial strain or stress  
  • 43%of recipients experienced increased food security  
  • 43%of recipients experienced decreased feelings of isolation

And of former youth from care receiving 

  • 94%of recipients experienced reduced financial strain 
  • 68%of recipients experienced increased food security 
  • 60%of recipients experienced increased housing security 
  • 58%of recipients experienced improved mental health 


Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada wishes to express its thanks to the following benefactors who have made gifts to the Emergency COVID-19 Appeal. We are extremely grateful to all our donors for making a significant commitment to vulnerable children and youth across Canada.

This list represents commitments made from March 20, 2020 – June 15, 2020.

Anonymous (2)
The Atkinson Foundation
Mark Daniels and Andrea Weissman-Daniels
Linda and Bob Goldberger
Greenrock Charitable Trust
Marg MacLean and Dave McCann
TJX Canada
Moses & Temara Tobe Foundation
The UPS Foundation
Aaron Zifkin

Altas Partners LP
The Jalynn H. Bennett Foundation
BlackRock Asset Management Canada Ltd.
The Canavan Family Foundation
Richard and Darleen Falconer
James C. Johnson
The Robert G. Kearns Foundation
Fred and Donna Leslie
Dr. Jeremy Sturgeon
Julie and Scott Werry

Anonymous (6)
Geoffrey Belsher
Sheila Block
Martina Borchardt and Family
Central 1 Credit Union
John and Diane Gibson
John Grayson
Jupiter Energy Advisors
The Lindy Green Family Charitable Foundation
Mike Keilhauer
David Leith and Jacqueline Spayne
Andrew and Jessica Maciel
Jane Marshall
Steve and Anita Marshall
Morella Menon
Robin Pascoe and Rodney Briggs
Ellen Powell
Reel Causes Society
Norine Rose
Pierre Senecal
Jim Shenkman and Denise Zarn
Mairi Stewart
Nazanin Tabei Rahbar
Toronto Life-Spring Christian Fellowship
Townsend Family Foundation
Kathleen Wronski