While Children Wait

While families access First Words services, parents can also benefit from information and services provided by various community agencies. Here are some ways health professionals can help!


  • Link families to Ottawa Public Health Information Line at 613-580-6744. Families can speak to trained First Words nurses about any issues related to Speech and Language services, programs and other early years services and agencies.
  • Encourage families to visit the “Strategies” or “Learning Tools” sections of the First Words website. Parents will find useful resources and information to help promote their child’s communication development.
  • Link families to the community. Many free early years programs focusing on learning and social development are offered in the Ottawa community through various agencies. The Parent Resource Centre maintains a directory of parenting resources available in the Ottawa-Carleton region.


Private speech-language pathologists:

  • Parents may wish to use a private speech-language pathologist for their child at their own cost. Families who have received the services of a private speech-language pathologist can still receive First Words services.
  • First Words keeps a list of private speech-language pathologists who see children in the Ottawa area.  Please note that First Words does not confirm the practitioner’s certification or qualifications.
  • The Private Practice Checklist includes suggested questions to use when contracting a private speech-language pathologist.