Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions about our child care programs? We’ve got answers!

Most of our Child Care Centres open between 6:45 a.m. – 7:30 a.m. and close between 6:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. To be sure, check the hours of the Child Care Centre closest to you.

If your child develops an infection or illness, you are responsible for keeping him/her at home. If your child gets sick during a YMCA program, we will contact you to make arrangements to have your child picked up. Children should only return to the Child Care Centre after they have been well (without fever) for 24 hours.

Fees for licensed YMCA Child Care Programs can vary depending on the age of your children, the program you select and the centre you plan to attend.

Families can apply for the Ontario Child Care Subsidy. The Ontario government, municipal governments and First Nations communities share the cost of this program. To inquire about Regional Child Care Subsidy please contact your local Regional Subsidy office.

At the YMCA, we base our costs on the number of children enrolled in our programs. As such, we cannot offer refunds if your child misses days due to an illness, vacation, or other absence.

Yes. We will provide you with an official Child Care Income Tax receipt on or before February 28 of each year.

At the YMCA, our focus is on helping children develop six core values: Respect, Responsibility, Inclusiveness, Caring, Health, and Honesty.

We integrate these values into our Centres’ everyday actions and activities. By doing this, our aim is to provide your children with opportunities to discover themselves, develop social and recreational skills, and strengthen their self-esteem. By teaching increased responsibility, our school age curriculum helps children put their values into action to become strong leaders and strong citizens. At the same time, our program encourages children to demonstrate caring and support for others, regardless of their background or life experiences.

Changes to your account information including: updating your contact information or emergency contact information, requesting changes to your child's child care registration - including withdrawal notices, all can be done by completing this form.

Please note, registration changes and updates can take up to 10 business days to be completed.

Our answers to commonly asked questions about Summer Club

Registering for Summer Club

Build your custom eGuide to register for Summer Club.

  • Requests for cancellations or refunds must be made in writing and submitted to the YMCA Registration Centre via fax or email. Requests for refunds received prior to 28 days from your club session will receive a refund minus an administration fee of 10% of the total fee or $25 (whichever is greater). Refund requests received with less than 28 days notice from your club session are subject to an administration fee of 50% of the total fee. Refund requests that are received after 12 p.m. on the Friday before the club session starts will not qualify for a refund.
  • All refund requests are considered on an individual basis. A doctor’s note is required for cancellations due to medical reasons.
  • Refunds are not granted for inclement weather and take four to six weeks to process.
  • Available to families with children who require additional support while in club programming. We do our best to ensure that every child’s needs are supported throughout the duration of their Summer Club program. Some sites are not fully accessible.
  • Spaces are first come, first serve and our Integration Coordinator works closely with your family to review your child’s needs.
  • The YMCA may decline applications based on the level of training and/or expertise required to support the child safely. The child must not pose a health risk to themselves or others, the club location must be suitable for the child's needs, and support staff and other children attending the club program must not be put at risk due to undisclosed behaviors.
  • To register please complete the online Inquiry form.

Preparing for Summer Club

  • Club for children 4 - 5 years old – 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday to Friday, inclusive of extended hours. Please ensure you sign your child in and out of the program each day with a YMCA staff member.
  • Club for children 6 - 12 years old – 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday. Please ensure you sign your child in and out of the program each day with a YMCA staff member.
  • Extended Hours – available where a Registered Early Childhood Educator and general child care staff can provide supervision and a variety of learning experiences that are both age and developmentally appropriate. It is designed to extend upon the interests of the children from their core day.
  • Visiting your child’s program location is the best way to learn more about their experience. Call ahead, directly to the location to make arrangements to meet your child’s group at the designated meeting area. You will be asked to wear a visitor badge and sign in and out.
  • Healthy and nutritious snacks are offered in the morning and afternoon.
  • Please ensure your child comes with at least two snacks and a hearty lunch to ensure they are fueled for the day! When you plan your child’s lunch please keep in mind that there are no refrigerators or microwave ovens available.
  • Some children in our care have various severe allergies and we ask families to pack nut friendly snacks and lunches as well as familiarize themselves with the programs known allergens to help minimize risk to all participants.

Lunch option:

  • This summer, we’re serving up wholesome lunches that will fuel your child’s body and brain so that they’re ready for an afternoon of fun and excitement. The Real Food LunchBox program provides children at select Summer Club locations with nutritious and delicious meals prepared fresh by Real Food for Real Kids. For more information on how you can place your order, visit Real Food for Real Kids.
  • Please dress your child in light weight comfortable clothing that can accommodate a variety of activities. It is a good idea to layer clothing as mornings can be cool and days can be very hot. Running shoes and closed-toe shoes are preferred footwear to ensure your child’s safety while participating in activities.
  • A swim suit, towel, and swim shoes/sandals will be required for swim/water play.
  • Along with comfortable, lightweight clothing, your child should also have a backpack filled with these essentials all labelled with their name: hat, sunscreen, refillable water bottle, swim suit, towel, and swim shoes/sandals.
  • Our staff will do their best to ensure children keep their belongings in their backpacks, but sometimes things get left behind. Please check daily to make certain your child is coming home with all of their belongings. Encourage your child to bring only what is needed for the program each day.
  • If your child loses something, call your Summer Club program directly, or next time you arrive at the program take a few minutes to look through the lost and found bin. Any found items at the end of the day are collected and stored at each Summer Club program.

Dropping off and picking up your child

  • On the registration form you are able to include two main contacts and one emergency contact. If you require additional adults to be authorized to pick up your child from a Summer Club program, please send a note to your child’s Summer Club Leader with the date and your signature. All persons our staff have not met will be required to provide photo identification when they arrive. The person must be over the age of 16.
  • If someone comes to pick up your child without your written authorization, we will contact you for verbal permission before releasing your child.

Health-related questions

  • If your child is going to be absent, please call the YMCA summer programs office at 1-877-303-2267 or your Summer Club location’s phone number, which will be provided to you by the site Director, and leave a message.
  • If your child is too ill to participate fully in all aspects of the program, please keep them home from Summer Club.
  • In the event your child becomes ill at a YMCA Summer Club program, we will call you to come and pick them up at the club location. The YMCA is regulated to follow local public health guidelines.
  • If your child requires medication during the day, please download the YMCA medication form (PDF) and ensure you submit it, along with the medication, directly to a YMCA staff member on the first day of the program.
  • If your child has a potential life-threatening allergy (anaphylaxis), please download the Individual Anaphylaxis Emergency Plan (PDF) and ensure you submit it, along with the medication, directly to a YMCA staff member on the first day of the program.
  • All medications must be in the original container with your child’s name and the date of the prescription, dosage instructions, including times to administer clearly labeled on the container.
  • Medications are locked in storage at Summer Club and can be refrigerated if required. If the medication is for emergency use (e.g. inhaler or EpiPen) the staff will carry it in their emergency waist pack. If your child self-administers their medication, they can carry it in their waist pack.

Extreme heat:

  • Staff will check the weather and air quality reports daily to help keep children safe. Before heading outdoors, staff will also consider the following: current temperature, air quality level, age of the children, location of the play area, appropriate clothing, and the time of day.
  • When the extreme heat prohibits the program from operating outdoors, staff will utilize indoor spaces for programming.

Thunderstorms:

  • Programs will continue to operate, however, children will remain indoors continuing their normal club day until the storm passes and it is safe to continue the program outdoors.
  • The best way to ensure children are protected from the sun is to teach them how to apply sunscreen and to wear a hat at all times when outdoors. Please send sunscreen labeled with your child’s name, and we will remind them to reapply throughout the day and after water-related activities.
  • We will also plan activities so that children are not in the hot sun all day and blend active and quiet activities. Canadian Cancer Society will provide children at select clubs with wide-brim hats free of charge and Society volunteers will work with Summer Club staff to teach your child the 5 steps to sun safety:
    • Wear a wide-brim hat
    • Apply sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher
    • Play in the shade
    • Wear loose-fitting clothes that cover your arms and legs
    • Wear sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection

If you are considering sending insect repellent to Summer Club with your child, please read the instructions carefully and check Health Canada’s recommendations:

Ages 2 to 12:

  • Choose a product with less than 10% DEET
  • Insect repellent should be applied after sunscreen and should be reapplied after water-related activities.
  • Visit Health Canada for more information

Don’t forget to label your child’s insect repellent with their name. Staff will remind your child to reapply insect repellent only if it is within the Health Canada recommended percentage of DEET. You may want to consult with your child’s physician before applying any insect repellent.