Frequently Asked Questions
Currently, children and youth up to their twenty-first birthday, who have a neuromuscular or musculoskeletal disability generally restricting their mobility are eligible for admission to the program. We also accept children who are medically fragile or who are technologically dependent in our Complex Medical Needs program. Top of Page
Ask your Social Worker from the Ottawa Children's Treatment Centre, the
Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, or your Community Health Centre,
to arrange an appointment for you to see the Rotary Home. You can also
phone the Executive Director or Director of Operations & Client Care
directly to arrange an initial meeting. (613.236.3200 ext 24)
At the first meeting you will be given a tour of the Home and will meet the staff. Parents are asked to complete an admission form and return it to the Rotary Home. Information that you give concerning your child's care will be kept confidential. It will be used to make a care plan for the Counsellors to follow when your child comes to stay. You are also asked to send in a doctor's certificate stating that your child is free of communicable diseases such as tuberculosis and hepatitis B.
At this time parents often like to book a half-day to "try it out". This gives you and your child a chance to get to know us. This is followed by reserving a weekend or a week......a real break! Try not to worry; your child is going to receive excellent care and have fun with the Counsellors and other children. Top of Page
Families are asked to pay $10.00 per day for each child. There are no additional charges. The remaining costs are borne by the Ministry of Community and Social Services and Ministry of Children & Youth Services. Top of Page
In order to give everyone a chance to use the Rotary Home, 25 nights per
calendar year is allowed for each child. These nights may be used all
together or as a few days now and then throughout the year. Children in
the Regular Planned Relief program regularly receive up to 35 nights of
Preschool children using the day-only program, available only during school hours, may have unlimited days during the school year, depending upon availability.
Due to the very high demand during school vacations, depending upon availability, families are limited to the following:
14 days during July and August per year
2 long weekends per year
3 school professional days per calendar year
March Break once every 4 years
Phone between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. any week day to reserve the time
that you would like. You can also use our
online booking program.
It is strongly recommended that you phone well in advance of the days that you want, especially if they are during school vacations.
A few days before the admission, a staff member will phone and confirm with you that your plans are still the same. However, it is thoughtful of you to phone earlier to advise us if your plans have changed so that we may let other parents know that there is space available for their child - there are always people on the waiting list.
The Rotary Home is open twenty-four hours every day except for a short period over the Christmas holidays, usually from noon on December 23rd until 9 a.m. on January 2nd.
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Some unexpected situations inevitably arise in all families. These might
include the illness of one of the parents, or an illness or death of a
close family member.
The Rotary Home wants to help you and will make every effort to accommodate your child at this time. Telephone DAY or NIGHT and arrangements will be made, if space is available, for your child's immediate admission and stay until the crisis is over.
Days used in an emergency do not count towards the usual number of nights used per year; you may plan your vacation time knowing that we are always available for you as well (space permitting) in unexpected circumstances. Top of Page
Clothes including appropriate outdoor clothing such as a hat, jacket, mittens, etc., Special equipment such as catheters, splints, voice-box, wheelchair, etc., medications, diapers, bottles and formula for babies, food supplements such as Ensure, a special toy if the child feels more comfortable with it. Toothpaste, toothbrush, and shampoo.
Please label all belongings and make a descriptive list of everything.
All medication must be in it's original bottle with a prescription label.
As laundry is done every night, two or three changes of clothing are more than enough for the child's stay. In order for us to be able to return items to their rightful owners, parents are requested to label all clothing. We also have lots of safe and colorful toys, as well as crafts and puzzles. Please note that the Rotary Home cannot be responsible for equipment arriving in a damaged condition. Top of Page
Due to the high demand for respite we are often full to capacity. In
order to ensure we do not have too many children under our care at one
time admissions times are between 15:00-16:30, and discharges between
At each admission parents are asked to review and update the care plan and make any changes to it. The admitting Counsellor or Nurse will also review the medications and special equipment with you at this time. Counsellors who can be 'in charge' undergo a training routine in the administration of medication. The care that your child receives at the Rotary Home is based on your guidelines. As much as possible, the same schedules and procedures that are used at home are followed by our staff.
You will be asked to sign forms that give the Rotary Home permission to care for your child, to take your child on outings, and to seek emergency medical attention if necessary for your child.
Once a year you will be asked to sign special needs agreement, as well as renew the doctor's certificate regarding communicable diseases.
You will also be given your bill, which we request you pay upon admission.
Sometimes children are admitted right from school. This is possible through arrangements made by the parents with the school board's transportation department to have the school bus deliver the children to the Rotary Home. A parent in this case must come in prior to the admission of the child, sign the forms, and review the care plan and medications. Top of Page
Children are discharged to their parents. Special permission, in
writing, must be given to the Rotary Home if someone else such as a
relative or baby-sitter is picking up the child.
We will send home with your child a discharge letter that is a summary of the visit including activities, appetite, etc. to keep you well informed. There is also a "feedback" form for parents to complete. We encourage you to send it back to us, as it helps us to know how your child's visit was from your point of view. Top of Page
Your child follows a normal day just as he or she would at home. School
children go off to school on their buses in the morning with a packed
lunch if required. Parents must make the transportation arrangements at
least one week in advance with the school. Babies and preschoolers play
with the Counsellors and Nurses during the day. After school, on
weekends, and holidays, activities are planned that are appropriate for
the weather and for the children in the Rotary Home at the time. These
might include arts and crafts, a walk to the store, a trip to a local
museum, or a picnic in the park.
The children normally sleep two to a room, unless there is an emergency, in which case there might be a third child. We have beds with side rails, and cribs - whatever your child uses at home will be used here.
Meals are nutritious and delicious. The staff and children eat together and share a lively conversation and a few jokes too! Bath and bedtime in the evening are at the usual hour that parents recommend for their child. Teenagers often enjoy a later bedtime on a Saturday night.
Therapists who normally visit you at home may keep their appointments at the Rotary Home. We cannot, however, arrange for your child to go out to doctors' or therapists' appointments. It is best to rearrange those appointments for a time when your child is not staying with us. Top of Page
We have a registered nurse in the Home or on call at all times. All our
staff are trained and supervised by the Director of Operations & Client
care, and all of our counsellors are required to have current First Aid
and CPR certificates.
We will phone you at once if your child becomes ill during a visit to the Rotary Home. If we cannot reach you right away, we will contact your emergency contact person, the child's doctor, or take your child to CHEO, depending on the seriousness of the situation.
Unfortunately, we cannot keep any child who develops an infectious disease such as a cold, flu, tonsillitis, chicken pox, etc., as it would be unfair to both the other children and the staff at the Rotary Home. In such a situation, you would be asked to take your child home with you as soon as possible.
If you are going out of town while your child is staying with us, please leave the name of an alternative person who can pick your child up if necessary.