Founded in 1986, PAL Canada Foundation is the national “umbrella” organization that represents and supports seven individual PAL chapters across the country, including Halifax, Ottawa, Toronto, Stratford, Winnipeg, Calgary, and Vancouver. Each PAL chapter has its own unique requirements, which are defined by the needs of their local community of professional and performing artists (and individuals from allied industries). Depending on the chapter, the focus may be to provide and sustain quality affordable housing for elders and/or challenged individuals within their professional and performing arts community. Alternatively, some chapters may not require accommodations, but do need support for their members.
The root and heart of the philosophy of PAL Canada, Supporting Cast is a group of volunteers who offer personal assistance to elder PAL members so that they can continue to lead meaningful, independent lives. These services may include assistance in dealing with community agencies and health care providers. In some jurisdictions, rides to medical appointments, running errands and light housekeeping may be available. Volunteers may offer companionship and a friendly sympathetic ear, but also serve to "Check in and Chat" with members who are on their own. Depending on the chapter, they may also organize weekly or monthly group activities that allow solitary members to get together with their peers.