Personal assistance for leisure activities (PAL)


Our PAL (personal assistance for leisure activities) card program makes participating in our recreation and leisure programs possible, comfortable and more enjoyable for people with disabilities.

A PAL card allows a person with a disability to bring a helper - often a friend or family member -- with them to each activity to assist them in participating - in most cases, at no extra cost since the helper does not actually take part.

PAL cards can be used at our public swims and skates, community centres (city-run programs only) and golf courses; simply present your card when paying your program fees.

Please note: The PAL card is not accepted for ticketed events at our facilities that are operated by external organizations, businesses or promoters.

PAL card eligibility

Anyone who is more than four years old, and has a disability that restricts them from performing activities, which has lasted longer than six months and cannot be eliminated by the use of a technical aide, such as eyeglasses, is eligible for a PAL card.

Temporary PAL cards are available for those with temporary disabilities.

Attendants must be 15 years of age or older; different attendants can assist the program participant on different days.

Please keep in mind, if an attendant would be participating in an activity with a PAL cardholder - regardless of his or her disability - the attendant would be expected to pay the program fee. For example, if a child, who has a PAL card, does not meet our age requirement to swim alone during a family swim at one of our pools, an adult would be required to supervise the child - and pay the fee to participate.

PAL card application process

Applying for a PAL card is easy; simply:

  • Pick up a paper application at city hall or any of our community centres or pools, and drop off your completed application to: Inclusion Services - City of Kitchener, 200 King St. W., 7th Floor, PO Box 1118, Kitchener, ON N2G 4G7.

You will be asked to include two references on your application; we will contact both references to ensure you're eligible for a PAL card.

If your application is approved, your PAL card will be mailed to you.

PAL Card partners

The PAL card is also accepted by our program partners, including the cities of Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph, Thunder Bay and the Township of Woolwich. Check out our full list of partners.

If a program or business is not included on our list, and you would like to use your PAL card to participate, please contact them directly to ask if they PAL card is accepted. If you are aware of a program that accepts the PAL card and it is not listed, please let us know and we'll add it to our list.

For more information, please contact us at 519-741-2200, ext. 7225; TTY: 1-866-969-9994 (system for deaf and hard of hearing callers).

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