New process for submitting payments for Manitoba student loans

The Governments of Canada and Manitoba have integrated some of the administration of their student loan programs. For Manitoba Student Aid (MSA) borrowers, this means that the loan disbursement and repayment of Manitoba student loans are now managed by the National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC). Students will continue to submit new student loan applications, requests for reassessments and appeals for funding to MSA as that part of the MSA program is not changing.

Please note that MSA is no longer accepting payments for Manitoba student loans. Please visit the NSLSC website to learn how you can continue repayment of your Manitoba Student Loan.

For further information, please check out the link here: Frequently Asked Questions about the Canada-Manitoba Integrated Student Loan.

B.C. Provincial Tuition Waiver Program Promotional Materials

As part of StudentAid BC’s expansion of the Provincial Tuition Waiver Program (PTWP) for former B.C. youth in care in 2023, they have shared a set of promotional materials to help increase awareness and access to the program.

The following promotional materials are now available:

✔️  8.5×11 inch poster for your office poster boards
✔️  Graphic for sharing on your social media channels
✔️  Digital sign for digital displays
✔️  YouTube video highlighting StudentAid BC programs for Former Youth in Care
✔️  Rack card to share with former children and youth in care you are connected with (sample below)

The poster, social media graphic and digital sign can be downloaded via the links above and are available on the Forms Library on the StudentAid BC website.

High quality versions of the poster and rack card are both available for order (free of charge). Complete this order form and submit by March 8, 2024, and the requested materials will be mailed to the addressee in Spring 2024.

Feel free to share this email and links with your networks to help former B.C. children and youth in care learn about and access the Provincial Tuition Waiver Program.

If you have any questions related to the above information, please contact tuitionwaiver@gov.bc.ca.

WoodGreen Rent Smart

On behalf of WoodGreen Community Services, we are excited to announce that we will be offering a winter session of Rent Smart starting in late February, 2024, co-facilitated by Will McCarty from our own Youth Housing Navigation and Subsidy Support Program, Stella Rose and Karen Hawes from our Financial Empowerment team and Karly Wilson, a housing lawyer and collaborator from the Don Valley Legal Community Services.

There are 6 modules in all, covered over the course of three sessions on topics designed to help young people identify and sustain housing in Toronto and the GTA. They are as follows:

1. Identifying and securing housing

2. What to look for in your search and how to view and inspect a unit

3. How to assess affordability

4. Considering types of housing (individual vs joint tenancies)

5. Types of agreements (standard leases vs subletting arrangements)

6. Landlord engagement – tips and tricks

7. Effective communication

8. Credit reports

9. Human rights and discrimination

10. The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA)

11. Rights, responsibilities and expectations under the RTA

12. Making a budget and filing taxes

13. What financial benefits are there to help?

14. Evictions and the Landlord Tenant Board

Please note that these sessions are open to all, regardless of age or background, but with a focus on youth aged 16-30 years old.

Those who complete all three sessions will receive a certification demonstrating their provincial tenancy knowledge. While participants are more than welcome to attend single sessions, all three must be completed in order to receive their certificate.

Please find the Information for These Sessions Below:

Time: Session Dates: Locations Details:

6:00PM – 8:00PM Wednesday February 21st Part 1 815 Danforth Ave – 1st floor

6:00PM – 8:00PM Wednesday February 28th Part 2 815 Danforth Ave – 1st floor

6:00PM – 8:00PM Wednesday March 6th Part 3 815 Danforth Ave – 1st floor

Attached you will find our flyer. If you have any questions regarding this training, please feel free to use the contact information on the flyer and we will respond as soon as possible.

Kind regards,

Erik

Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada’s 2024-25 Scholarship Application is Now Open, Apply Today!

Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada post-secondary scholarships award young people $5000 for each academic year until they finish their program (to a maximum of 7 years from their program start) through a once yearly competitive application. The deadline to apply is Wednesday, January 24th, 2024.

If you are starting or continuing in full time studies in the 2024-25 academic year, and aren’t already receiving a Foundation Scholarship ($5000 a year)*, apply here for the Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada Scholarship today!

Visit our website for the link to the online application form, full eligibility information and answers to the most asked questions, or contact the Foundation’s PSE team at grants@cafdn.org .

Scholarship applications are open to youth with both financial need and the potential to succeed in their program of study. To be eligible, a student must be:

  • Be attending a post-secondary institution full-time or on a reduced schedule due to an academic accommodation, for a full school year starting in September 2024 or January 2025
  • Have been or will be in the temporary or permanent care of the Ministry or Department responsible for child protection services up until your age of majority birthday or had been in permanent care of the Ministry or Department responsible for child protection services for at least 12 months
  • Are under the age of 30
  • Are over the age of 30 and have not received a CAFC Scholarship or Bursary before

If you have any questions about the application form, process, or eligibility, we can help!  

Email grants@cafdn.org with your questions and visit our website for more information and the application link.

Apply for Education or Employment Help Through Youth Opportunity Fund 

The Youth Opportunity Fund is available to youth who were in permanent care in Canada or who are (or were) eligible for their provincial or territorial extended care program. You can receive funding for a wide range of supports that can help you accomplish educational or career related goals.  

Youth Opportunity Fund could help cover: 

  • Tutoring services  
  • Academic bridging programs 
  • Application fees for graduate programs 
  • And more! 

Eligibility requirements: 

  • Youth who were or are in permanent care in Canada 
  • Youth who were or are eligible for their provincial or territorial extended care program (e.g. Agreements with Young Adults, Continued Care and Support for Youth, Support & Financial Assistance Agreement) 

Learn about the National Transformation Project by watching the video below: 

If you are interested in learning more, contact Jasmine Yiweza at jyiweza@cafdn.org. 

Access Services for Education, Employment, and More through Futures Forward

If you’re a youth in or from care in Manitoba, check out Futures Forward | Support for Current and Former Youth in Care for services in your area. 

The Futures Forward program provides services to youth who are in or have aged out of Child and Family Services (CFS) system in Manitoba as they transition into adulthood. Services include mentoring, education, workshops, skill development, and referrals. Appointments are available in-person or virtually. 

Check out their website here for more information. 

Manage a Stressful Semester with #bytelearning

Learning bytes are short courses, typically no more than 6 minutes, that are designed to be easy to digest. You can search Rumie’s library for the topics you would like to learn, then choose a course and start learning!

This week’s #bytelearning follows the theme #education. Take a look at the following learning bytes to learn healthy eating tips:

3 Ways to Study Smart Shares tips that can help you create study habits that work for you. Sometimes we might be missing just a few tips that can improve our studying.

5 Ways to Focus on Your Mental Health This Semester Teaches you how important it is to focus on your mental health first. School is important, but it’s not everything. You matter too!

How Can Routine Help Me Manage Stress? This learning byte is a great resource to use if you are having trouble getting your tasks done because of stress. Getting a routine going can work wonders and help you manage your stress.

Rumie Initiative is technology company, a nonprofit organization, and a Canadian registered Charity. Check out the website here.

“We fill the gap between what you learned at school and what it takes to succeed by building the habit of lifelong learning.” – Rumie Initiative. 

5 Self-Care Tips to Practice This Exam Season

Since we are getting close to the end of the year, things are starting to get busy. With exams coming up for students, end of the year reports, or an influx of customers, it can be a very stressful time for a lot of people. The best thing you can do to prevent getting overwhelmed during this time is to take care of yourself. You can do this by checking in on your mental health, resting, and doing activities that bring you joy. Canadian Association for Mental Health (CAMH) has a fantastic infographic “Six Ways to Practice Self-care” which you can find here.

Here are 5 self-care tips that can help you get ahead of your stress:

Eat Healthy & Drink Water

It is important to make time for eating, even if you feel like there’s no time to take a break and finish studying. If you find that it’s difficult to remember to eat at the right times, you can try creating a plan and setting alarms or reminders on your calendar. Drink lots of water and have snacks throughout the day.

Get a Good Sleep

Sleep is necessary when we’re trying to use a lot of brain power. If you find that you do not have enough energy to get you through the day, check in with yourself about how much sleep you’re currently getting and if you could use more. 7-9 hours of sleep is a good amount of time to aim for.

Slow it Down

Take breaks! Your brain needs small breaks throughout the day so that you don’t overwhelm yourself. You could take some time to go for a walk, get a coffee, or listen to music. Believe it or not, it can help you get more work done when you take small breaks throughout the day.

Move Your Body

Sometimes going for a walk or doing a short activity that makes you move around can be beneficial. This can help release endorphins, which can help reduce stress. Even if you don’t feel like going outside, you should try your best to move throughout the day.  

Socialize

Talk to your friends, housemates, or family when you can. Sometimes when we feel sad, we isolate ourselves. It can help reduce stress to talk to people you enjoy hanging out with and to surround yourself with your support system however you can.

Try some of these tips if you find yourself struggling to get your school work done, complete projects, and can’t seem to find time to relax. From exam season to the holidays, this can be an incredibly stressful time.

Education Support for Youth in and From Care

Are you a current youth in or from care looking for help with education? At Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada, we truly believe that everyone should have the opportunity to pursue their education. The Foundation offers various programs that can help youth with application fees, scholarships, bridging programs, and more. 

Check out the following programs that the Foundation offers:

Scholarships – If you are planning on attending a college, university, or trade program, consider applying for a scholarship through Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada. You can get up to $5000 for the academic year. Find out more details here or contact Amanda Ball aball@cafdn.org.

Bursaries – If you are planning on attending a college, university, or trade program, consider applying for a bursary through Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada. You can receive up to $2000 per academic year. Check out the details here or contact Amanda Ball aball@cafdn.org.

Campus Tours – If you are interested in touring the campus of a university or college and would like support, contact our youth employment mentor Asifa Malik asmalik@torontocas.ca.

HSBC Youth Opportunity Fund – Youth under the age of 26 who are (or were) in permanent care in Canada can apply for the HSBC Youth Opportunity Fund. This provides youth with an individual grant for education or employment goals such as tutoring for college or university, application fees, high school upgrading, and more. Learn more here or contact Jasmine Yiweza at jyiweza@cafdn.org.

3 of the Best Free Virtual Skill-Building Resources

Would you like to further your interests and skills using virtual skill-building resources? If you like to learn and keep your brain active, we’ve got you covered! For those subjects you love or that topic you want to learn more about, virtual resources can help you. From biology to history, you can expand your knowledge through interactive lessons. 

Check out these 3 free virtual skill-building resources:

Codecademy logo, which has a rectangle around the word code. 

1. Use Codecademy to learn computer science, coding, and web development. You can take lessons in HTML/CSS, Python 2, JavaScript, Java, and more. Codecademy’s free and interactive courses offer you the opportunity to explore courses about skills you might be interested in pursuing further.

TED logo.

2. Visit TED, a non-profit organization that aims to make great ideas accessible and create conversation. These ideas are primarily in the form of short talks, under 18 minutes. This is a great resource to expand your knowledge of current events, hear advice from professionals, and listen to inspiring stories.     

You do not need to create an account to access content on the site, however there are options for a paid membership.

Khan Academy logo.

3. Khan Academy offers free world-class education for everyone through a set of virtual tools. This organization produces short lessons in math, biology, history, economics, grammar, and more, in the form of practice problems, articles, and videos.

There are different levels of education with many topics in each. You can create an account or browse courses without one.

I have been taking the first year university course on world history, which is easy to follow. I enjoy watching the video lessons the most, so I recommend trying one if you find a subject that you’re interested in.