//function hashchanged() { // var hash = location.hash.replace(/^#/, ''); // // Your code to have the proper tabs open, like // $('#FLW').tab('show') //} //window.addEventListener("hashchange", hashchanged, false);

Financial Empowerment Program

What is the Financial Empowerment Program?

The Financial Empowerment Program is a program that may be able to help you if you are living on a fixed income, if you are a lower income earner or if you are new to Canada. Our trained and certified counsellors can provide you with one-to-one support to help you with accessing a variety of government tax benefits, with preparing and filing your taxes, and with personal budgeting techniques that may improve your financial health. All our financial empowerment services are offered at no cost to our clients.

If you are a low-income earner or if you are currently homeless, we may also be able to assist you with obtaining or replacing lost identification at no cost to you.

The Sudbury Community Service Centre offers free one-on-one financial counselling sessions either over the phone and in person to individuals living with lower incomes. Our professional financial counsellors can provide advice and support to people struggling with budgeting, paying bills on time, and paying down debt. To find out more or to set up an appointment please contact our office at
705-560-0430 ext. 0


How can we help?

  • One-on-One Financial Counselling
  • Income Tax Services
  • Financial Literacy Workshops
  • Fee Waiver Program
  • Financial Wellness in First Nation Communities

What happens at a financial counselling session?

Our Financial Counsellors will:

  • Assess your financial situation
  • Provide advice about what to do if you’re struggling to pay bills on time
  • Set financial goals
  • Develop a realistic budget and savings plan
  • Provide advice on how to use credit wisely
  • Provide advice if you are being harassed by debt collectors
  • Let you know if there are government tax benefits or incentives to help your situation. If so, we can also help you with the application processes.

How else can I benefit?

Money issues create stress, can affect family life, impact mental health and can create a sense of hopelessness. We see this everyday with the people we help. We know that low-income individuals and families in Ontario experience incredible struggles each day just trying to manage. We may be able to help relieve some of that pressure and not only improve your financial well-being but your overall health and happiness as well. Our Financial Empowerment Counsellors are accredited professionals who work with thousands of individuals each year and we have helped to change so many lives. Our service is free, confidential, and available in both official languages for families and individuals from any culture or background.

Income Tax Services

The Sudbury Community Service Centre offers a free year-round tax clinic for low-income individuals and households. Our team is supported by trained volunteers who can assist with preparing simple tax returns. We can file taxes as far back as 10 years and can provide Notice of Assessments and other tax related information.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Single Income <$35,000
  • Two people <$45,000
  • Three People <$47,500(add $2,500 per each person)

Please note, we are unable to assist individuals who:

  • Have self-employment income with deductions to claim
  • Have business or rental income & expenses
  • Have investment income of more than $1,000 per year
  • Are deceased in the tax year in question

Tax services are offered

1. Over the phone (virtual)

Requires a minimum of one of the following:

  • T4
  • T4A/T4A(P)
  • T4A(OAS)
  • T5007
2. Drop off:

You can drop off your tax packages from Monday to Friday between 9:00am and 5:00pm (closed between 12:30Pm and 1:30PM) or drop your information in a sealed envelope in the drop box. The tax package must be sealed so that documents are not lost. You must write your name, birthday, and phone number on the envelope.

Here are the requirements

  • Tax information - You MUST provide all your T4, T5007, T4A, T4E, T4A(OAS), T4A(P), etc
  • You need to know how much you paid in rent or property taxes for the tax year in question
  • You must have a total of all medical deductions if any for the tax year in question

A volunteer will call you once your tax return is complete

3. Meet with a Counsellor

If you prefer to meet with a counsellor in person, please call the office for list of clinic days during the months of March and April. Those who wish to take part in our clinic days may be asked to provide their tax information ahead of the scheduled appointment.

To get ready for your appointment Download your Tax Form here

Financial Literacy Workshops

We deliver presentations to community groups on a range of different financial topics including:

  • Budgeting / Money Management
  • Proper use of credit
  • Credit Rating & Credit Score
  • Collection Agencies
  • Contracts and Cosigning
  • Payday Lenders and High Interest Loans

Our Contact information

Contact the office for more information or to book your workshop at 705-560-0430 ext 0

Birth Certificate Fee Waiver Program

Assisting individuals who are marginally housed or experiencing homelessness to obtain a birth certificate

Who is eligible to receive a birth certificate for free through the fee waiver program?

Individuals who are marginally- housed or experiencing homelessness are eligible to have the fee waived for a birth certificate.

For the purposes of this program, an individual who is marginally-housed or experiencing homelessness:

  • Does not have a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence
  • Lives in a shelter or transitional housing program for people who are homeless; or
  • Lives any place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping place for people.

How does an individual who is marginally-housed or experiencing homelessness apply for the fee waiver?

The fee for the payment of a birth certificate can be waived if the individual’s birth certificate application is submitted by the Sudbury Community Service Centre who was approved by Service Ontario to participate in this Fee Waiver Program.

Building Financial Wellness in First Nation Communities

The Sudbury Community Service Centre with support from Prosper Canada will be working with First Nation communities in Ontario that are interested in initiating or expanding Financial Empowerment services.

This program will work with project partners from First Nation communities to achieve the following project outcomes:

Tax Filing & benefits applications:

- Free tax filing to obtain refunds & benefits including Canada Child Benefits, GST and Trillium Credit. We are able to complete up to 10 years of filing.

Facilitate access to obtain personal identification:

- Facilitate access to free birth certificates, social insurance numbers, ID card.

Money Management sessions:

- Money management workshops as well as one-to-one financial coaching, financial counselling & problem-solving.


- Curate and share program toolkits that can be used by other indigenous communities.

FAQs – Financial Empowerment

You can call us at 705-560-0430 and chose extension 242 or 223 to speak to one of our counsellors. They will be more than happy to answer any and all of your questions.

Our services are completely free! There is no cost for anything we do to help our clients.

We are open from 9AM to 5PM every weekday, closed between 12:30PM and 1:30PM for lunch. We are closed all major holidays and on the weekends.

Simply give us a call to set up your free and confidential appointment today. We can help you either over the phone or in person, whatever is easier for you.

We offer our programs to all persons regardless of race, creed, religion, gender, or age. Our service area ranges from Sault Ste Marie to North Bay and from Barrie to Hearst and all locations within.

We offer our services both virtually (all locations) and in person (select locations based on resources) depending on what each individual requires.

Our free income tax services have an income cap; $35,000 after taxes for one individual, $45,000 after taxes for two individuals (a couple or singe parent and one child) plus an additional $2,500 after taxes for every individual after the second. We are unable to complete taxes for individuals who are self employed and want to claim expenses. We are also unable to complete taxes for individuals who have investment income over $1,000 per year.

We offer several different services that may benefit you. We offer free income tax preparation and filing for low income individuals. We offer budget counselling and debt management counselling for individuals struggling with debt repayment and managing their money. We offer presentations and workshops to organizations looking to educate and empower their employees or members in all matters of budgeting and credit awareness. We also offer assistance with applying for government benefits and the Ontario Electrical Support Program (OESP).