Tools for everyday life

These times have affected us all in one way or another. We recognize that change is often difficult but just because we’re apart right now, that doesn’t mean we’re alone.
We’ve pulled together some tools to help you virtually navigate and create your new everyday life.

It’s that time of year again! The annual RRSP contribution deadline is March 1st. Here are answers to some common RRSP questions. 

  • Inflation is a concern for many of us. We’ve all noticed rising costs, and one of the most obvious increases has been in our grocery bills.

Here are some tips on ways to manage grocery costs.

  1. Shop with a list. Studies have shown that consumers who avoid impulse spending can save up to 23% on their grocery bills.
  2. Create a meal plan for at least 4-5 days a week. Planning your meal helps ensure you buy what you need and helps reduce wasted food items.
  3. Price match. Many grocery chains will match competitor prices. Check online to see if your preferred grocery store offers price matching.

Here are some more ideas on how to reduce your groceries bill! 12 Ways to Save Big on Grocery Shopping & Cut Your Bill Without Coupons | Canada | My Money Coach

Fuel costs have also been steadily increasing, which means higher heating costs. Here are some tips that could help you reduce your utility bill without freezing!

  1. Draught-proof your house
  2. Install a programmable thermostat
  3. Keep your furnace filter clean
  4. Wear a sweater and socks at home

Learn more here:

  • Giving back.

The beginning of the year is a great time to make your charitable donation plan for the year. Here are a few things to keep in mind when deciding where to lend support.

  • When you give to a registered charity, they will provide you with a charitable tax credit. Make sure to keep this receipt and include it in your 2022 taxes to receive a rebate.
  • Donations to Go-Fund-Me pages and other unregistered organizations are considered personal gifts and are not eligible for a tax rebate.
  • Volunteering is also a great way to give back to your community. While in-person volunteer work is challenging right now, there are still opportunities to contribute. Volunteer Canada’s COVID-19 Volunteer Opportunities has resources on how you can donate your time.

  • The 2020-2021 school year hosted lots of upheaval for kids and families. As students head back to class this fall, it’s important to prioritize their mental and physical health and leave space for self-care.  School Mental Health Ontario has resources for Parents and Students on ways to practice self-care every day.   
  • This year’s back-to-school checklist will look a little different too. Here’s one from Kid’s Help Phone that can help families plan for another school year with COVID-19. Back to school checklist.
  • Operational Guidance: Vaccines policies are determined by the individual school boards.  You can learn more by visiting your school boards website.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause increased levels of stress and anxiety.   CAMH – The Canadian Centre for Addiction and Mental Health has put together a website full of resources to provide tools and resources for coping with the pandemic.  It includes stories from members of the CAMH extended family – specifically people with lived experience of mental illness, who share how they are coping day to day.

Exercise is key to your physical and mental well-being:

  • While abiding by social/physical distancing rules, get out for a walk, jog, bike ride or rollerblade
Healthy eating keeps you well:

  • YouTube is a great source for meal tips

COVID 19 Vaccines – learn more

COVID Alert app is available in Ontario and can be downloaded for iPhone and Android devices.

Shopping and Socializing: We’re so glad to be able to connect in person again.   Stay safe while enjoying the company of family and friends.

  • Wear a mask in retail stores and restaurants
  • Socialize outdoors when possible
  • Stay home if you’re not feeling well
  • Get vaccinated

Coupons: Time consuming couponing is a thing of the past. FLIPP helps you build your grocery list and find great deals.

Review Memberships: Review and cancel memberships that you no longer have use for. They add up. This way, you will save money on unnecessary expenses.

2021 Taxes Quick Reference Guide: Check out this handy list of tax numbers and contribution limits for the 2021 tax season.

  • Wear your mask – masks are required in travel hubs and on vehicles (planes, trains, bus)
  • Get a COVID-19 test: most travel requires a negative COVID test taken within 72 hrs of travel
  • Submit your documents and COVID test results when returning to Canada using the ArriveCan app