Easter Seals

March is Easter Seals Month.

Kids with physical disabilities don’t want your stares or sympathy, but they do deserve your admiration and respect. Kids and all individuals with physical disabilities face incredible challenges each and every day, but with a little support and assistance they can become unstoppABLE. That’s the message Easter Seals wants to spread during March is Easter Seals Month.

 “Kids with physical disabilities have incredible strength and determination. They have to try harder and persevere through daily challenges most people can’t imagine; whether it’s their own mobility limitations, lack of accessible facilities or the stigma that comes from being a little different from other kids,” say Kevin Collins, President and CEO, Easter Seals Ontario. “And yet, when they get a little help, many are able to go on and accomplish great things.”

Take Emily, for example, who spent the first six years of her life in a hospital. Born with centronuclear myopathy, a rare disability, Emily uses a power wheelchair for mobility and a ventilator to assist with her breathing. Easter Seals helped pay for her van lift, which meant her family could easily get her in and out of their vehicle. Because of the van lift Emily was able to unlock her full potential. She is now pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Toronto and plans on becoming a Child Psychologist.

Families contend with overwhelming expenses raising a child with a physical disability. From accessibility equipment to home renovations, therapists and travel to and from medical appointments, costs often exceed more than $40,000 a year. Most families can’t afford all of the expenses on their own. Easter Seals strives to help families provide the equipment their children need.

“We wholeheartedly believe that with a little help kids with physical disabilities can be unstoppABLE,” continued Collins. “Through the generous support of our donors, the programs we provide at Easter Seals Ontario are intended to help kids get to the next level and achieve their potential; to be more independent and self-confident so they can accomplish their goals and be all they can be.”

March is Easter Seals Month is the beginning of Easter Seals Ontario’s annual fundraising and awareness campaign for kids with physical disabilities. Our goal during this month is to increase awareness surrounding the ongoing challenges and needs kids with physical disabilities experience while raising much-needed funds to support the organization’s programs and services.

Province-wide fundraising initiatives include:

  • The annual Easter Seals direct mail campaign, containing the traditional Easter “seals”, arrives in homes across the province.
  • Between March 9 and April 1, the Easter Seals Paper Egg Campaign takes place in retailers across Ontario including Sobeys, Foodland, FreshCo, Price Chopper, Avondale, Highland Farms and Booster Juice, where shoppers are invited to support the organization by purchasing a $2 paper egg.
  • The annual Easter Seals Telethon will air on Sunday, March 25 from 12 noon to 6:00 p.m. in Sault Ste. Marie, and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in WindsorEssex, from April 2 to 6 on CKWS from 6:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.1:00 p.m., and 5:00 pm. to 5:30 p.m. in South Eastern Ontario, on Sunday, April 8 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in Peterborough and Toronto, and on Sunday, April 29 from 2:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. in Sudbury. For more information, visit EasterSealsTelethon.org.

Easter Seals Ontario has been a champion for children and youth with physical disabilities for the past 96 years. Programs and services include funding for essential mobility equipment and communication devices, fully accessible summer camp opportunities at its two properties, Camp Merrywood and Camp Woodeden, post secondary scholarships and special education and other information resources for parents. Easter Seals relies solely on the generosity of donations from the public to be able to offer its programs and services. For more information, visit EasterSeals.org.