Applying for Ontario Works

COVID-19 Information and Updates

In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, County of Wellington Social Services offices are closed to the public until further notice. Social Services continues to provide service over the phone, by mail and through electronic communication. Please see below for service options.

Dropping off documents?
Please use the drop boxes location on the exterior of our office buildings.

Need to contact our staff?
Please contact staff directly by phone/email or speak to our reception staff by phone for assistance at 519.837.6274

Need to apply for assistance?
You can apply online or contact us by phone for assistance at 519.837.6274

Pre-arranged in-person services
Call ahead to arrange a time to visit us to complete the following in-person transactions:
1. Signing your new lease with Housing
2. Picking up an assistance cheque

In-person rent payment is not available at this time.

For all tenants that currently use Debit/Interac for rent payments or pay in person, we request that you would consider alternate options for rent payment for the next few months. This will help us all to maintain safe social distancing, and reduce community transmission of infections. This is a reminder that it is a tenant responsibility to pay rent on time, and we understand this situation may be challenging so we want to support you in making arrangements where possible. Please contact the Housing Services office if you are able to make alternative arrangements to paying rent in person, including but not limited to:
 - Pre-Authorized Payments
 - Cheques; mailed to the office or dropped off at the office mailbox
 - Post-dated cheques (only accepted for rent payments after the first month's rent)
 - Ontario Works (OW) pay direct system
 - Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) pay direct system

We appreciate your understanding and flexibility as we work to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Am I Eligible?

You may qualify for Ontario Works if you meet the following conditions:

  • You live in Ontario
  • Your income and assets do not exceed the allowable limits
  • If you are living with parents and have a child or are not financially dependent on your parents
  • You are over the age of 18, or are over the age of 16 and attending school full time

Application Process

There are two steps involved in the Ontario Works application process:

Step 1 - Screening

There are two ways to apply for Ontario Works:

Option 1 - Phone:  519.837.2670 x 2603 or Toll Free 1.800.265.7294 or TTY 1.800.855.0511

Option 2 - Online at:

All of the screening for Ontario Works is completed by intake workers in our main office located at 129 Wyndham Street North in Guelph. If you do not have access to a phone or computer, you can visit our offices in Guelph or Fergus in person for assistance.

Before applying you should gather the following information about yourself and all of your family members:

  • Proof of date of birth
  • Citizenship and Immigration information Women on a telephone
  • Social Insurance Number
  • Health Card Number
  • Address details (current and past 12 months)
  • Rent or mortgage details
  • Utilities details (e.g. gas and hydro)
  • Landlord's name and address
  • Bank account information
  • Income and asset information
  • Employment status and history

During the screening you will be asked some questions that will assist in determining your eligibility. This screening could take twenty to forty-five minutes to complete.

Step 2 - Face to Face Interview

If there is potential eligibility for Ontario Works, the intake worker will schedule an appointment for you to come into your local office. During this interview, the Worker will review the details you provided by phone or online, along with the documents you bring to the interview to complete your Ontario Works application.

Interpretation Services

The Ontario Works department is dedicated to ensuring that individuals from all cultural and language backgrounds are able to access necessary services. When required, the services of qualified interpreters are available for most languages, for the face-to-face interview of the Ontario Works application process.

© 2020 County of Wellington, 74 Woolwich St. Guelph, Ontario N1H 3T9, T 519.837.2600, TF 1.800.663.0750, F 519.837.1909