Assistance programs

Apply for fee assistance or request inclusion support to take part in programs.

On this page

  1. Fee Assistance Leisure Access Program
  2. PAL Card and partners
  3. Apply for inclusion support
  4. Every Kid Counts

Fee Assistance Leisure Access Program

The Fee Assistance Leisure Access Program is now available online. If you wish to fill out a hardcopy form, or if you require assistance in-person an appointment must be made. Walk-in applications will not be accepted. Please email

We offer assistance to those who can't afford to pay fees for affiliated recreation, leisure, arts and culture programs:

  • successful applicants get a $300 credit per person, per year
  • credit can be used for city-run programs, and affiliated minor sports, or arts and culture programs
  • credit can't be transferred to future years or refunded
  • you need to re-apply every year

Our funding year

We accept applications all year but our funding year runs from December 1 of one year until November 30 of the following year. If you apply for funding after the end of October, we will consider your application in the next funding year, starting December 1.

For complete program information, view the Fee Assistance Leisure Access Program Policy.

Application requirements

You can apply at any time. If you qualify, your credit will be active from December 1 to November 30 the following year.

  1. You must live in the City of Waterloo.
  2. You must be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or a refugee. A person who is in Canada temporarily, like an international student or foreign worker, is not considered a permanent resident and does not qualify.
  3. Your household income (before taxes) is below the low income cutoff:
Members of household Annual income before taxes
1 $22,324
2 $27,790
3 $34,165
4 $41,481
5 $47,046
6 $53,061
7+ $59,076


To apply online, you need an email address and the required documents.

For Canadian citizens and Permanent residents:

For everyone 18 and older in your household:

  • proof of income, such as a tax return or government benefit statement
  • proof of address in the City of Waterloo, if not included on proof of income

For refugees who have arrived in Canada within the past year:

  • proof of permanent residency or refugee status for each family member

To apply online you must have required documents in a digital format such as a PDF or image file. Clear smartphone photos of a document are accepted.

Apply for fee assistance online

Confirmation emails will be sent to successful applicants within two weeks of submission.

Canadian Tire Jumpstart Program

The City of Waterloo’s Fee Assistance Leisure Access Program is only one option for support. Canadian Tire’s Jumpstart program gives kids aged four to 18 a chance to participate in sports. It provides financial aid to qualifying families for program registration costs. Find out more on the Jumpstart website.

PAL Card and partners

We provide inclusion support for residents with disabilities who may require assistance to participate in city programs.

A PAL card allows a person with a disability to be accompanied by a personal attendant at no extra charge so they may participate in municipal programs. Cards are accepted for most Waterloo recreation programs, and are also recognized in Kitchener, Cambridge, Guelph and Woolwich Township. Some private businesses also accept the PAL card.

View our list of PAL card partners. If a program or business is not included on our list and you would like to use your PAL card to take part, please contact them directly to ask if the PAL card is accepted. If you are aware of a program that accepts the PAL card and it is not listed, please let us know and we will add it to our list.

Apply for PAL card online

Apply for inclusion support

If you or your child require support to participate in any of our programs, we will do our best to accommodate you through program adaptation, trained volunteers/staff or other means of assistance.

Support is provided by leisure support volunteers or inclusion/program staff to residents of Kitchener and Waterloo. It is available at no charge, based on availability, and must be requested at least two weeks in advance of a program start date.

For camps, support staff are available for up to two weeks. Spaces are first come, first served. Early registration is recommended. The application process is as follows:

  1. Complete an inclusion membership application. This is required before you can register for program support. Apply on the City of Kitchener's website or by phone at 519-741-2200 x 7229, TTY 1-866-969-9944.
  2. Register for inclusion support using ActiveWaterloo. Inclusion support is offered for seasonal, session based programs and camps. Select the inclusion program that matches your desired program.
  3. Once registered for support, register for your desired program.

Every Kid Counts

The Every Kid Counts program raises funds to help kids of all abilities attend summer camp. Donations can be made through the City of Kitchener.