At the Peel Children and Youth Initiative, we have been working to help enrol every eligible child in the Canada Learning Bond – free government grant for postsecondary education. Our Enrolled By Six: Peel Postsecondary Strategy is a community effort that works to change systems and policies in Peel to make it easier for families to find out about the Canada Learning Bond and to sign up.

Our strategy was largely supported by the groundwork laid by SmartSAVER, which has been doing similar work in Toronto. Our friends at SmartSAVER have just launched a new tool to help families across Canada access the free government funds for education. This week on our blog, they share more about their new initiative:

SmartSAVER has just announced a new initiative that will help lower-income families access the Canada Learning Bond (CLB). SmartSAVER has partnered with Scotiabank, RBC, Vancity Credit Union, Meridian Credit Union, and BMO to offer a new online Canada Learning Bond application and RESP starter called “Start My RESP.” Applicants can apply to start an RESP with no fees and no contributions required to access the CLB. The application provides language support in five languages: Spanish, French, Mandarin, English and Punjabi (with more languages to come).

The Canada Learning Bond helps lower-income families start their education savings and provides families with up to $2000 in free education money. Despite its numerous benefits and low risk for families (no contribution is required) the Bond has had low take-up across Canada. Over 1.4 million children (70% of those eligible) have not received their bond. There are currently 150,000 eligible children in the Peel Region who have not received their Bond. The “Start My RESP” initiative facilitates access to federal education savings money and makes it easier for families to take action without delay.

smartsaverYou can help more families receive the Canada Learning Bond. Tell the families you know and work with about and encourage them to use the site to start their application. Share this news with your colleagues and networks by forwarding SmartSAVER’s newsletter or sharing this message via your social channels. Be sure to stay in the loop by subscribing to SmartSAVER’s newsletter here.

For more information about how you can get more involved with SmartSAVER please contact:

A new tool to help families save for their children’s postsecondary education
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