About FASD

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is a diagnostic term used to describe health effects on the brain and body of people prenatally exposed to alcohol.

FASD is a lifelong disability. Individuals with FASD will experience some degree of challenges in their daily living, and need support with:

  • motor skills
  • physical health
  • learning
  • memory
  • attention
  • communication
  • emotional regulation, and
  • social skills to reach their full potential

Each individual with FASD is unique and has areas of both strengths and challenges.

There is no known safe amount of alcohol during pregnancy. Learn more about why and how to have an alcohol-free pregnancy.

FASD is one of the leading causes of cognitive and developmental disability for children in Canada.

FASD Ontario online portal

FASD Ontario is an online, accessible and bilingual website that has a:

  • directory of information and services
  • list of learning events
  • compilation of local, national and international news
  • online community to share information

FASD Ontario

Community-based workers

Find an FASD worker in Special Needs Coordinating Agencies across the province.

Community-based workers provide information and develop service plans. They also help families access services and connect individuals to available support networks and diagnostic services.

Indigenous FASD/Child nutrition program

The Indigenous FASD/Child Nutrition Program is designed and delivered by Indigenous service providers to Indigenous children, youth and families. The program includes:

  • personal support and intervention services
  • education on healthy eating
  • traditional cultural activities to promote FASD prevention

The program is offered by 21 Indigenous service providers across 180 communities in Ontario.

Family and caregiver support group

Support groups bring families and caregivers together for:

  • peer support
  • information sharing
  • awareness activities

Supports for children and youth

For children

Eligible families can access ministry programs for children with special needs, such as:

Families who are eligible can also access the Special Services at Home and the Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities programs.

Learn more about available services and Special Needs Coordinating Agencies.

For youth

Youth with developmental disabilities can access integrated transition planning through the ministry’s regional offices. This is useful for young people who may be:

  • preparing for adulthood
  • transitioning from secondary school
  • outgrowing other services due to age

Beginning at age 14, every young person with a developmental disability can create a written plan that:

  • informs education planning for the young person to help them transition from secondary school and child-centred services to adulthood
  • helps prepare family members for these transitions
  • identifies goals for work, further schooling, and community living