The Child and Youth Support (CYS) Program provides financial and medical benefits for a child when the parents or guardians are unable or unwilling to care for the child. These benefits are also available when the child is being cared for in another home of an adult caregiver and the child or youth is not in need of intervention services.
This program is intended to supplement some of the child’s needs and offset some of the costs associated with the care. The care and responsibility of the child remains with the parents/guardian and caregiver. The CYS program promotes stable relationships for a child or youth by offering an alternate out-of-home placement.
The caregiver and child may be eligible to receive benefits if:
- the child’s parents or guardians have provided a letter of consent for the caregiver to provide care for the child or
- the caregiver has private guardianship of the child
- the child is under 18 years of age at the time of application
- the child’s income does not exceed the financial guidelines of the program
- the child or youth is attending school, employed full-time or attending a full-time training program
- the child is residing with the caregiver 7 days per week
- the parent or guardian who is unable or unwilling to provide care for their child may not be living in the same home as the caregiver
- the caregiver does not live on-reserve (the Child Out of Parental Home Program is available for caregivers who live on-reserve)
Biological and adoptive parents are not eligible to apply for the CYS benefits for their own children.
Once approved, the amount of the benefits vary based on the age and income received on behalf of the child.
- children 0 to 11 years: Up to $105 per month
- children 12 to 17 years: Up to $148 per month
Limited supplementary benefits
- extended medical coverage under the Alberta Child Health Benefit Program
- child care expenses
- school fees or expenses
- annual supplementary benefit: up to $200 per year
If you have questions about other programs you may be eligible for, talk with your CYS Caseworker.
The income of a caregiver is not considered in determining eligibility for this program. Certain income that may be received on behalf of or directly by the child is considered for determining program eligibility. This income includes:
- maintenance or child support payment
- Income Support or Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), where the child is listed as a dependant
- income received through the child’s employment
- the child’s student loans or grants
The Canada Child Benefit is an exempt income source.
How to apply
More information and application forms are available at all Children and Family Services offices. Contact your local office directly, or call 310-0000 toll free for the phone number of the office nearest you.
The caregiver is required to provide documentation to support the application. The caseworker may require an in-person meeting with the caregiver and child.
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