Experienced volunteers are ready to lend a helping hand this tax season for people in Haliburton County, the Central Food Network (CFN) says.

Locations in Wilberforce, Haliburton, and Minden will be hosting free weekly clinics.

CFN, a community agency that shares food and heat resources, is working in partnership with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to host the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP).

The program provides free tax-filing assistance for lowincome households to access the vital financial benefits for which they are eligible, CFN said.

Last tax filing season, CFN income tax volunteers unlocked $216,565 in benefits through the tax clinics, which also makes these tax clinics an economic boost both to the region and to the households.

“It may seem like a simple thing, but helping someone complete their income tax return can unlock critical benefits such as the Canada Child Benefit (Baby Bonus), GST/HST refunds, the Guaranteed Income Supplement for low-income seniors, and more. Every dollar is crucial these days as we continue to see the cost of basic needs rise faster than incomes,” says Lindsay Hobbs, income tax clinic coordinator with CFN.

She added, “helping people increase the amount of money coming in can reduce the need for households to access our other programs, while improving dignity.”

Anyone interested in becoming a tax volunteer can visit canada.ca/taxes-volunteer, call CRA at 1-800-959-8281, or email taxes@centralfoodnetwork.org. CVITP clinics are run by a friendly team of tax volunteers and welcome everyone with a modest income and simple tax situation. Community members are encouraged to reach out to Rachel at CFN to book an appointment. Clinics begin on Feb. 29 and run through April 25; alternate options are available for those who have limited mobility. Call or email: rachel@centralfoodnetwork.org; 705-306-0565.