24/7 Crisis Line:
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Autism and Behavioural Services

Explore our resources, tip sheets, and links to other programs below 

Early Signs of Autism

We understand that it can be scary if your toddler is showing signs of a developmental delay. Understanding what is going on is your best first step. 

Read through the list of early signs of Autism below. If your child is showing any of the signs, please speak with us at Hands, or your family doctor as soon as possible. 

  • Not responding to sounds, voices, or name
  • Poor eye contact
  • No social smiling by 6 months
  • Unusual attachment to or use of toys/objects
  • Not showing items or sharing interests
  • No babbling, pointing, meaningful gestures by 12 months
  • Any loss of speech or social skills
  • No two-word phrases by 24 months
  • No use of single words by 16 months
Close up of a hand finger painting

Respite Funding

We offer respite funding for those in crisis, as well as for group and individual activities. You can find our applications for respite funding below. 

For more information, please contact Paula Hampton, Enhanced Respite Coordinator, at 1-800-668-8555 ext. 1334 or by email at autismrespite@handstfhn.ca

Toddler and his teddy bear sitting on the ground facing away from the camera

Child and Youth Mental Health

Explore general information on Child and Youth Mental Health, as well as topic-specific resources below.

General Information and Forms

Family Resources


  • Drugfacts4YoungPeople.com:A comic to use as an educational tool for children/youth about drug and alcohol use
  • Pine River Institute:A residential treatment centre and outdoor leadership experience for youth 13 to 19 struggling with addictive behaviours and other mental health issues

Anxiety and Depression

  • Anxiety and Depression Association of America:Learn about anxiety and depression disorders, read about types of therapy, or attend webinars about Anxiety and Depression
  • Togetherall (formerly Big White Wall): A safe community to support your mental health, with peer-to-peer support and clinicians available for those who need it
  • BounceBack: A free, skill-building program to help adults and youth (age 15+) manage low mood, mild to moderate depression and anxiety, stress, or worry

Crisis Support

  • Mental Health Crisis Line for Children and Youth: Call 1-844-287-9072 for 24/7 support in Muskoka, Nipissing, or Parry Sound 
  • Kids Help Phone: Professional 24/7 counselling for mental health, addictions, and well-being for people between 5 and 20 years. Free, anonymous and confidential.
    Phone: 1-800-668-6868
    Text: TALK to 686868 (English) or TEXTO to 686868 (French)
    Live Chat counselling: www.kidshelpphone.ca
  • Good2Talk.ca: Call 1-866-925-5454 for 24/7 professional counselling for mental health, addictions, and well-being. This service is available for post-secondary students in Ontario between the ages of 17 and 25, and is free, confidential, and anonymous
  • Crisis Services Canada: Need help? Connect with a responder now by calling 1-833-456-4566 or texting 45645. You can also chat with a live agent at crisisservicescanada.ca


  • Kids Help Phone: Find a youth program near you or read more on mental health and wellness related topics
  • InfoAboutKids.org: Read science-based articles on child and family development
  • Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario: This health centre provides support for eating disorders, sexual assault, early language development and more. For children and youth under 18 years
  • Canadian Mental Health Association: Find mental health tips and information about specific mental health topics 
  • Children’s Mental Health Ontario: A network of 4000 professionals ready to help young people facing mental health challenges – for free 
  • CLEO – Community Legal Education Ontario: Clear, accurate and practical legal information to help people understand and exercise their legal rights
  • Mindyourmind: A space where youth can get information, resources, and tools to manage stress, crisis, and mental health related problems. 
  • Empowered Kids of Ontario: They support evidence-based investments, policies, and programs for kids with special needs and their families. Find information on services and locations of children’s treatment centres.  
  • School Refusal: Supporting kids who avoid school

Death and Grieving

  • The Dougy Centre: A place to find support, resources, and connection before or after a death

Divorce and Separation

Tele-Mental Health

Ontario’s Tele-Mental Health Service provides children and youth in rural, remote and underserved communities with access to specialized mental health consultations through videoconferencing. Find information below: 

Youth Information Sheet: Read more information about your video meeting

Developmental Services for Adults

Explore general information on Adult Developmental Services, as well as topic-specific resources below.

General Information and Forms

Supporting Adults with Developmental Disabilities

Executive Functioning Newsletter

A newsletter for senior leadership in organizations providing human services. Browse the following titles to find an article of interest.

  • Executive Functioning and Evidence-Based Decision Making – Vol 1, Issue 1
  • Deliberate Indifference: Understanding the Legal Ramifications of Risk – Vol 1, Issue 2
  • Informed Medical Consent. Is there a Role for Agencies and Their Staff? – Vol 1, Issue 3
  • Bearing Witness – Vol 1, Issue 4
  • Self-Advocacy, Signatures and the Dotted Line – Vol 2, Issue 1

Developmental Services Ontario

Developmental Services Ontario, or DSO, is the single point of access for all ministry-funded adult developmental services. Find additional information about DSO below: 

Passport Program

Virtual Support

We offer virtual service wherever possible, to safely deliver important and much-needed services while protecting employees, clients, families and communities.

We have developed resources to help you access our services virtually. Click on the links below to learn more about connecting to virtual services using BlueJeans: