Short Breaks (Respite)

While respite provides people and their families with short breaks, it is really about building a relationship with someone and having experiences together that are beneficial and enjoyable for everyone.


The Benefits Are Great

Short Breaks, formerly known as Respite, provides a break for the people we support and their families, but the benefits to those providing the short breaks are plentiful.

Our Direct Support People say it is one of the most enjoyable and rewarding experiences they’ve had:

  • It’s an opportunity for your family to become comfortable with a wide range of people, learning to treat everyone with the same level of care, respect and friendship.
  • You’ll enjoy all the fun and fulfillment of building a relationship with an individual that is well matched to you and your family and brings their own personality and sense of humour into the mix.
  • You’ll know that you’re making a difference in the lives of an individual and their family without really trying; you’re simply enjoying life the way you already do, while sharing it with someone else.


respite testimonial

“I like my respite weekends because I get to hang out with a couple of different families who are my own age. One family has a baby and a puppy. I think their baby is cute. I like seeing what movies and X-Box games they have that I can play. Sometimes we go out to eat at a restaurant. Sometimes we go for a big family meal and I get to meet their parents. Their families are nice and I like meeting new people. Our weekends are fun.”

Our Short Breaks Program provides a break for both people with disabilities and their families, by matching them with a Direct Support Person who cares for your son or daughter in either your home or the home of the Direct Support Person. The focus is on developing relationships, with people being matched with screened Direct Support People who have completed general training and who have been provided with specific information related to the person’s needs. Short Breaks are flexible, lasting a few hours or a weekend, or longer.

Referrals to Extend-A-Family Waterloo Region’s Short Break program are made through the Developmental Services Resource Centre.

To connect for more information, contact Ron Trajano at 519 741-0190 x 225 or at

Interested in being a Short Breaks Direct Support Person?

Add life to your home and family by welcoming a person who has a disability for a short break. If you are interested in inviting a person into your home every now and then, find out how you can become a Short Breaks Direct Support Person!

Become a Short Breaks Direct Support Person