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Supporting children’s growth

All parents want the best for their babies and children. That means making sure they get the best possible start in life.

A child's early years from before birth to age six are very important for healthy development. This is a time when a child’s brain and body are developing at a rapid pace. Healthy babies and toddlers are more likely to stay healthy through their childhood, teen and adult years.

A strong, loving relationship between a parent and a child supports the child’s healthy growth and development.

Government services

Services to support your child's health


All newborns have their hearing tested within a few days of birth.

Speech and language

Find out about your child's speech and language development, and the help that's available.

Ontario Early Years Centres

At your local Ontario Early Years Centre, you can connect with other parents, share your experiences and find out more about parenting and community programs. These centres also have activities for both parents and caregivers and children up to age six.

Developmental Concerns

Ontario funds the Infant Development Program to help children up to age five with developmental disabilities or who are at risk of developmental delay. The program provides services in the child’s home and community, with a focus on supporting parents in promoting their child’s early development. Attention is given to gross and fine motor, social-emotional, language, cognitive and self-help development.

Find the Infant Development Program nearest you.

Blindness and low vision

Ontario also offers programs to support children who are born blind or with low vision.

Developmental checklist

The Nipissing District Developmental Screen checklist can help you see if your child's growth and development is on track. This checklist is available for Ontario parents at no charge.