December: Information Sharing Edition
 In this edition: 

  • Recreation Centres to Close Temporarily
  • Summer Student Lottery Applications Available Online
  • Introduction to Family Fuse
  • 2021 Community Organization Investment Applications
  • ProsperUs Virtual Information Session for Community Organizations
  • ProsperUs Releases Update on the Progress of Cradle to Career Strategy
  • Connections Curbside Book Pickup
  • Ontario Providing Additional Financial Support for Young Learners
  • Windsor-Essex's 2020 Vital Signs Report Released
  • Service Canada December Webinars
  • In the News
  • Local COVID-19 Information & Resources
Recreation Centres to Close Temporarily
An increase in COVID-19 cases locally has resulted in the City of Windsor moving into the “Red-Control” zone of the provincial Keeping Ontario Safe and Open plan, as of Monday November 30, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.

The “Red-Control” zone would have limited recreation services including the ability for teams to play games or practice.  However, the City of Windsor is taking additional steps, beyond the Province of Ontario’s framework and will suspend recreational services in pools, arenas and community centres for a two-week period in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.  This proactive and temporary closure also reduces the risk that municipal recreation facilities would become the site of any future outbreaks.

After-school programming in City facilities will continue, and tenants leasing space in City facilities for after-school programs or non-recreation services can continue, but all recreational programming and rentals ended on Sunday, November 29, 2020, and will be reassessed two weeks later.

Please visit the website to read the full announcement.

The Nature Fresh Farms Recreation Centre in Leamington and the Vollmer Complex in LaSalle have also announced temporary closures.
Summer Student Lottery Applications Available Online
The City of Windsor Human Resources Department is pleased to announce that applications for the 2021 Summer Student Lottery Program are currently available on the City’s website.

To ensure that hiring is fair and equitable, the selection of students to be considered is based on a secured computer program that randomly draws applications for order of consideration.

This summer employment program is a City Council approved initiative, subject to budget approval and in compliance with applicable union collective agreements. The program will provide eligible post-secondary students with the opportunity to gain valuable work experience while contributing to the cost of their education.

Applications must be completed and submitted online only by no later than 4:30 p.m. on Monday, January 4, 2021.
Introduction to Family Fuse
Pathway to Potential is pleased to introduce a new initiative in the Windsor-Essex area, Family Fuse.

Black Canadian parents, guardians, and caregivers are key to raising young black leaders in the community. Family Fuse was developed to offer Black Canadian parents, guardians and caregivers, across Windsor and Essex County, the support they need to navigate the education system. 

Family Fuse offers FREE workshops and FREE one-to-one coaching to those who are interested in the following:

  • strengthening the bond between themselves and their children
  • participating in their children’s education
  • increasing their confidence in navigating the school system
  • increasing knowledge and tools to provide better support for their children
  • accessing information independently
  • increasing a sense of belonging in the community
  • being recognized as supportive and contributing members of Windsor & Essex County
  • help your children make decisions about their education
  • help your children through racism and harassment
  • reducing stress
  • advocacy through Family Fuse

To learn more, please visit their website at

Family Fuse is also available by phone at 226-506-5872. Calls are answered Monday-Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

A brochure with more information on this initiative is available here.

Family Fuse is supported by its organizational mentor Women’s Enterprise Skills Training Inc. (WEST) and funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation. 
2021 Community Organization Investment Applications
Applications are now open for the 2021 Community Organization Investment initiative as part of the Community Benefits Plan.

Eligible organizations can submit funding applications until 12:00 pm (EST) on January 27, 2021, for proposed initiatives ranging from $1,000 to $25,000 (CDN) for events, programming or infrastructure improvements that will benefit the Sandwich/west Windsor or Delray/Southwest Detroit neighbourhoods.

Learn more about specific eligibility requirements and the application/review process here.
Download the application form.
Register to attend an upcoming virtual information session on Wednesday, December 9th at 1:00 pm.

Applications can be submitted in the following ways:
  • Electronically to in word or .pdf format noting “Community Organization Investment Application, Attn: Manager Community Benefits” in the subject line.
  • Via registered mail in printed format to the attention of the Manager Community Benefits at: WDBA Main Office, 100 Ouellette Avenue, Suite 400, Windsor, ON, N9A 6T3
ProsperUs Virtual Information Session for Community Organizations
ProsperUs is hosting two virtual information sessions for community organizations. These sessions will provide an overview of ProsperUs and Cradle to Career, an introduction to the solution design process, and next steps for engaging service providers in this collective impact work.

All organizations serving children and youth are welcome to participate. Those specifically offering middle years programming are strongly encouraged to attend.  

There are two sessions offered. You must register to attend. It is asked that you only register for one session, and that you send a maximum of 2 representatives from your organization.

Register by clicking the links below:

A flyer with information on the virtual sessions is available here.
ProsperUs Releases Update on the Progress of Cradle to Career Strategy
ProsperUs released its 2020 Fall Update Report on Monday, outlining the collective’s progress on its Cradle to Career strategy to eliminate childhood poverty in the region. The report highlights how community residents, service providers, and public and private investors are working together to build a better future for children and youth in Windsor-Essex County.

The 2020 Fall Update Report is a follow-up to ProsperUs’ first milestone report released last year. ProsperUs identified three priority neighbourhoods where the greatest challenges existed: Downtown Windsor, West Windsor, and Leamington. These neighbourhoods are targeted for ProsperUs’ pilot Cradle to Career investments. 

Over the next year, ProsperUs and the CAN Working Groups will be engaging public, private, government, and philanthropic investors to share their ideas and solutions as they work together to move the needle on Cradle to Career outcomes.
Connections Curbside Book Pickup
Every Thursday, Connections Early Years Family Centre offers curbside pick-up of FREE early literacy and numeracy packages personalized for your family!

To reserve your package and arrange for a pick-up time, please contact EarlyON staff at 519.252.9696 or at
Ontario Providing Additional Financial Support for Young Learners
The Ontario government is again providing financial relief for families facing new education-related expenses in the COVID-19 era. Parents or guardians residing in Ontario can complete a simple online application through the Support for Learners web page

The new Support for Learners program will provide direct one-time payments to help offset additional learning costs, whether their children attend school in person, online or a mix of both. The funding also assists with additional childcare costs, whether the child is in child care or at home. 

Parents or guardians residing in Ontario can complete one application per child to receive a one-time payment of:

  • $200 for each child up to age 12
  • $250 for each child or youth up to age 21 with special needs

The deadline to apply is January 15, 2021.
Windsor-Essex's 2020 Vital Signs Report Released
Vital Signs® is a community resource that builds knowledge, informs grant making, and identifies strategic priorities. Find out what makes Windsor-Essex a great place to live, work, play and grow. This is the eighth year the WindsorEssex Community Foundation has published a Vital Signs® Report.
Service Canada December Webinars
Service Canada is offering free webinars from December 1 to 17, 2020 to provide information to our Service Delivery Partners about federal government programs and services that could benefit your clients - including Indigenous peoples, seniors, persons with disabilities, families, youth, workers (including self-employed individuals), employers and newcomers.

Join from anywhere! The presentations are delivered via WebEx technology, with the audio portion provided via telephone. Choose to attend the webinars that are most relevant to you and your clients, the webinar schedule and topics are outlined below.

To register, please click the REGISTER NOW button below and e-mail your selection(s), you will receive joining instructions within two business days. The deadline to register is at 4:00pm, the day before any session.

For additional information, please contact by email.
For general information about Service Canada, please visit or call 1 800 O-Canada.  
Local Mental Health Sector Support Programs and Resources
On November 20th, Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens chaired an important dialogue with area mental health advocates and specialists, calling attention to the importance of establishing coping strategies throughout the pandemic’s ongoing second wave.

As Windsor and Ontario brace for a challenging winter, it is fair and normal for residents to experience increased anxiety and a range of complex emotions associated with COVID-19’s impact on our daily lives and relationships.

It is important to keep in mind that everyone, regardless of age, gender or stage of life, may be experiencing difficulties at this time, and it is that much more important to consider establishing personal strategies to support individual needs:
  • Check in on loved ones and friends;
  • If you are a parent, guardian or caretaker, take note to monitor your own condition as well as the condition of those in your care;
  • Establish healthy patterns and focus on activities that bring you happiness;
  • Create a “winter checklist” of local activities, and even household chores, that require your attention;
  • Take small daily actions, such as a family walk after dinner, regardless of temperature, to remain active;
  • Plan short and frequent phone calls or video chats with friends and family;
  • Plan for post-pandemic life, for example, planning what your next trip or holiday might be after this crisis has passed; and
  • Seek out advice from experts if you are feeling symptoms of depression, anxiety or hopelessness.

While the entire world is coping with the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to remember the importance of individual and daily actions to maintain mental health and resilience during this challenging time. Above all, be open-minded to seeking support for yourself and those around you to ensure that you have the benefit of advice and coping mechanisms.

Key Local Support Links:

CMHA’s On the Front Lines comprehensive list of mental health resources in the community.

HDGH Mental Health and Addictions
General Inquires: 519-257-5111
Community Crisis (24/7): 519-973-4435
Child & Youth Mental Health Supports – Starting Point Counselling Clinic:
519-257-5437 (KIDS)
Child & Youth Mental Health Supports – General Inquires: 519-257-5215

Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA)
Mental Health & Addictions Urgent Care Centre: 519-257-5111

Family Services Windsor-Essex
Windsor-Essex Counselling Support Line: 519-946-3277 or 1-877-451-1055 (24/7)

House of Sophrosyne - Lisa Tayfour Building for Recovery
Residential: 519-252-2711 ext. 100; Non-Residential: 519-252-2711 ext. 115
Opioid Deaths Spike in Shadow of COVID-19
Opioid deaths in Windsor and Essex County surged 44 per cent during the first 15 weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study.

The report, by the Ontario Drug Policy Research Network, Office of the Chief Coroner for Ontario, Public Health Ontario and the Centre on Drug Policy Evaluation, compares opioid deaths during the 15 weeks before the province declared a state of emergency March 17 and the 15 weeks after.

There were 16 deaths in Windsor and Essex County between Dec. 1, 2019 and March 15, 2020 and 23 deaths between March 16 and June 30.

And it has continued with alerts about high numbers of overdoses:
  • There were nine opioid overdoses here between July 10 and July 12. Some required multiple doses of naloxone to reverse the effects. In all, 39 people were taken to Windsor Regional Hospital in July for overdoses.
  • Twenty-six people ended up in the emergency department here in August because of overdoses and another 27 in September.
  • There were 11 opioid overdoses in eight days here between Oct. 13 and Oct. 20. Nine of them happened within 24 hours.

“The added stressors, isolation and changes in the drug supply are all contributing factors to increased rates of substance use and overdose in our community over the past several months,” said medical officer of health Dr. Wajid Ahmed, who has warned of the pandemic’s impact on substance use and mental health during public briefings.

For more information, please read the full article by the Windsor Star.
Feed Ontario Reports Surge in Food Bank Use during Pandemic
Feed Ontario releases an annual Hunger Report based on real-time data gathered by the provincial food bank network and provides an analysis of current trends related to poverty and food bank use across the province.

This year's report, Hunger Report 2020: The Impact of COVID-19 on Food Bank Use in Ontario was released on November 30th.

Highlights from the report:

  • Food bank use was on the rise pre-COVID-19: Between April 1, 2019 — March 31, 2020, 537,575 people accessed food banks across Ontario (+5.3% over the previous year), visiting over 3,282,500 times (+7.3% over the previous year)
  • With the onset of COVID-19, food banks saw a surge in demand: Ontario’s food banks saw a 26% increase in first-time visitors between March and June 2020
  • In some communities, government intervention helped flatten the curve of food bank use. However, as government supports wind down, food bank use is growing rapidly: 1 out of 2 food bank visitors are worried about eviction or defaulting on their mortgage in the next two to six months, and 93% borrowed money from friends and family, accessed a payday loan, or used a credit card to help pay for monthly necessities
  • Food banks are implementing a number of new programs to respond to COVID-19: With the onset of COVID-19, Ontario’s food banks rapidly shifted their operations in a wide variety of ways to meet the demand in their communities while adhering to physical distancing and safety guidelines
Ontario Providing Additional Funding to Enhance Safety and Protection in Schools
The Ontario government is providing $13.6 million to enable school boards to hire more teachers and staff in regions recently moved to the Red-Control level and providing stabilization funding for school boards, if needed.

The province is also expanding testing in school communities and launching new online learning portals. These initiatives will enhance safety measures for schools and alleviate potential budget shortfalls during COVID-19.

For more information, please read the full news release.
Local COVID-19 Information & Resources
Windsor is in the “Red-Control” level of Ontario’s COVID-19 Response Framework. Key changes include:
  • Social limits of 5 people indoors, 25 outdoors
  • Max 10 restaurant patrons seated indoors
  • Max 10 people indoors, 25 outdoors at gyms/fitness centres

Please visit the Windsor Essex County Health Unit website for detailed information about the local pandemic status and key enhanced measures.
Drive-Thru/Walk-Up Food Hub Locations:
Unemployed Help Centre of Windsor Inc.
6955 Cantelon Dr., Windsor, ON
P: 519-944-4900
Monday, Wednesday, & Friday
9:30 AM to 2:00 PM
Adie Knox Herman Recreation Complex
1551 Wyandotte St. W., Windsor, ON
Tuesday & Thursday
11:00 AM to 2:00 PM
For food hamper deliveries/referrals call UHC's Food Assistance Helpline:
519-944-4900 ext. 3

For more information about Drive-thru/Walk-up Food Hubs and Food Banks, please visit the Windsor Essex Food Bank Association website.
Municipal Social Investment Efforts
City of Windsor
Stephen Lynn
519-255-5200 ext. 5302
Teresa Falsetta Aflak
519-255-5200 ext. 6809
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