Recreation Assistance Program

The Recreation Assistance Program provides City of Hamilton residents living with a low income the opportunity to participate in organized sports and recreation programs.

For Families (with children under 18)

Benefits valid for 12 months from approval date

  • Free Family Participation Pass (valid for City wide drop-in recreation programs with no instructor)
  • Free Family Skate Pass (valid for City wide drop-in public skates)
  • 90% discount off City of Hamilton registered programs (up to $150 per child)
  • 50% discount off Affiliated Minor Sport* league registration fees (up to a maximum of $100  on baseball, basketball, soccer, lacrosse and football or $150 on hockey, skating, ringette)
  • 65% discount off of year round Camp Kidaca programs (up to 15 days at the base fee)

* To be affiliated, the organization must use a City of Hamilton field, arena, diamond or park and have filled out an affiliation package with Sport Development (House-league programs ONLY)

For Adults/ Seniors (no children at address)

Benefits valid for 12 months from purchase date

Adults/Seniors can choose one of the following:

  • 75% off an Annual Participation Pass
  • 75% off an Annual Skating Pass
  • 50% off an Annual Waterfit Pass
  • 50% off Adult Monthly Waterfit Passes

Individuals or families living in Hamilton below the Low-Income Cut Off (LICO) level after taxes (line 236).

2017 Statistics Canada Low-Income Cut-Off

Family Size Family Net Income must be below
1 $20,998
2 $25,555
3 $31,822
4 $39,701
5 $45,207
6 $50,136
7+ $55,065

How to Apply


  1. Complete the application form (PDF, 348 KB) listing everyone living in the household. Ensure everyone 18+ has initialled it
  2. Provide proof of your family net income
  3. Provide proof of  home address in the City of Hamilton

Home Address

  • Provide a photocopy of documentation with your home address such as a property tax bill, utility bill, driver’s license, etc. dated within the last 60 days.

Family Net Income

Providing a photocopy of ONE of the following:

  • Government Issued Notice of Assessment for the most recent year showing line 236 for all adults in the household
  • Child Tax Benefit Statement showing the family net income
  • GST/ HSTC Notice showing the family net income
  • Permanent Residency papers dated within the last year for everyone in the household (you may one be covered for a portion of the program)
  • Any full time student supported by a parent/ guardian can provide proof of full-time school enrolment
  • Ontario Works- Drug Benefit Eligibility Card- listing the names of everyone in the household
  • Ontario Disability
    • A letter from your ODSP worker stating everyone who is covered under the benefit
    • Your dental card and if you have children- the Healthy Smiles cards for each of them

Note: If you have lost or misplaced your Government issued documentation, you can contact the Canada Revenue Agency at 1-800-959-8281 to have them re-issue.  We do not accept tax software (i.e. accounting software, computer generated tax software programs)

Application submissions can be made:

By Email: rap@hamilton.ca
By Fax: 905-546-2338

In Person:
City of Hamilton Recreation Centre or Arena
Lister Block Building- 28 James St. N- 3rd floor

By Mail:
City of Hamilton
Recreation Assistance Program
Lister Block Building
P.O. Box 2040
Hamilton, ON L8P 4Y5

 

Camp Kidaca

Current RAP clients are given the opportunity to purchase a maximum of 15 days of year-round Camp Kidaca programs at a 65% discount* (Additional days can be purchased at the full rate)

  • This rate is only applicable to those who are current in the RAP program
  • The RAP program covers 65% of the base fee of camp, you are responsible to pay the balance with your own funds
  • No applications will be processed without payment!
  • Camp registrations can now be processed online. Please note, you will require a credit card or credit note on account, in order to complete your registration. Registrations made without payment do not hold a spot.

Frequently Asked Questions

What constitutes a family?
Program is based on the household income. Please include everyone that lives at the address on your application form.

How long does it take to process?
Please allow a minimum of 2 weeks for processing your application.

Can I use my Tax Software to prove my income?
No, you cannot use Tax Software to prove income. We require Government issued paperwork. For a list of accepted paperwork see the reverse side of the application form.

I have lost/ misplaced my Government Issued paperwork, what do I do?
You can contact the Canada Revenue Agency at 1-800-959-8281, and they will re-issue a document that can be used in verification.

My family situation has changed (got married, had a baby, moved out), what do I do?
Contact the Recreation Assistance Program and we will update your file. This is a requirement of the program.

What is an Affiliated Minor Sport?
Sports organizations that rent space (fields, arenas, and diamonds) from The City of Hamilton have the option to be affiliated with the City’s sport department. If they are affiliated, we can assist with the cost of registration. We can only provide assistance for house league affiliated sports.

My son/daughter is over the age of 18, but still lives with me. Do they have to be included on the application form?
Yes, the program is based on the household. We require everyone who lives in the house to be listed and provide their income.

Why do you require everyone’s initials on the application form?
We need all clients over the age of 18 to sign the application form, to verify they agree with terms and conditions of the program.

Why are you now using Line 236 to prove income?
Using line 236 for income verification aligns with other City of Hamilton subsidy programs and allows us to accept other Government issued documentation to prove income.

Can I register online and use my subsidy?
Yes. Every subsidy client already has an account in our new registration system. If you haven’t already registered within the new system, log in at www.hamilton.ca/recreation. Please do not create a duplicate account. If you are unsure how to log on, please contact 905-546-3747.

How can I register using my $150 program funds?
To register for a Recreation Centre program or Camp Kidaca, use the online system or visit your local recreation centre. Once you have selected your preferred course, the registration system will calculate the portion you will have to pay.

I want to register online, but I don’t have a credit card, what can I do?
You can put a credit note onto your account ahead of time so when you register online, you can split the payment between the credit note and your subsidy funds.

I don’t have enough to cover the full cost of the program. What can I do?
You can still register for programs but you will be responsible to pay the cost (balance) of the course. New funding cannot be given until your current year has expired.

If I pay up front for a course, can I be refunded once my subsidy is approved?
No, we cannot refund current clients once you have been approved. Each child is given $150 to be used within a 12 month period. Please space out your funds accordingly.

One child is not going to use their registration funds; can my other child use them?
No, funds are non-transferrable.

If I decide to withdraw from a program, can you refund my subsidy dollars?
All withdrawals must follow the refund policy, regardless of payment method. The refund policy can be found at www.hamilton.ca/recreation or at your local recreation centre.

Is Camp Kidaca subsidized?
Yes, we now subsidize all Camp Kidada programs (PA day, March Break, Winter Break and Summer Camp). You can receive 65% off the base fee up to a maximum of 15 days per subsidy year.

Do Adults/ Seniors get program funds?
No, at this time, the subsidy funds are allocated to assist children under the age of 18 with registered programs.

How can I get assistance for Minor Sports?
You have two options:

  1. Write the name of the organization in the Minor Sport space provided on the application form.
  2. Call or email the Recreation Assistance Program with the name of the child who is participating and the name of the sport organization.

Contact us

For more information contact:
Phone 905-546-2424 ext. 4569
Email: rap@hamilton.ca