With the arrival of your baby, new expenses combined with a drop in income can be an added source of stress, so try to keep life simple. There are different types of financial aid that may be available to you. Full information can be found in the Becoming a parent: Government programs and services chapter.
Take advantage of your pregnancy to make your needs known to people around you. You can also explore the treasures to be found in thrift shops, garage sales, second‑hand clothing stores, used furniture stores, and bazaars held by church and community groups.
Concerned about the costs associated with the birth of a first baby? Check out the 2008 edition of Un bébé à bas prix, published by the consumer association ACEF. The guide is available (in French only) for $7 (plus $3 for shipping). You can order it online at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 514-257-6622.
If your family is having trouble adjusting financially to your baby’s arrival (debt, difficulty paying regular bills, etc.), there are about 30 consumer associations in Québec that offer free budget consultation services.
For the name of the association nearest you, contact Union des consommateurs du Québec at 514-521-6820 or 1-888-521-6820, or Coalition des associations de consommateurs du Québec at 514-362-8623 or 1-877-962-2227. You can also visit www.consommateur.qc.ca (in French only), which provides a list of these associations.