Ability Online Celebrates its 20th Anniversary at the Hockey Hall of Fame
Ability Online is an on-line capacity-building and support network for children with disabilities and chronic illnesses
TORONTO, Nov. 8, 2012 /CNW/ - Thursday, November 8, 2012, Ability Online will mark its 20th anniversary this year at 6:00 PM tonight, at the Hockey Hall of Fame.
The event, hosted by Michelle McClure, Ability Online's Executive Director, and co-sponsored by Allstream and Invacare Canada, will celebrate two decades of the organization's dedication to helping children who need it the most - in Canada, the U.S. and around the world. The theme for tonight, "Leveling the Playing Field" was chosen to acknowledge the accomplishments of today's Paralympic and professional athletes who are also supportive of Ability Online's vision.
"The 20th Anniversary marks an incredible journey. From our early beginnings as a bulletin board system with access virtually limited to the GTA, we have taken Ability Online's founder, Dr. Lefebvre's original vision of reducing the social isolation of children with disabilities and turned the program into an international resource," said Michelle McClure, who has been with the organization since its inception. "We have watched some very special children build confidence, find friends and begin to like themselves and the world they live in. But we are far from being done. There are thousands more children who feel the negative social effects of having a disability and are often excluded or bullied because of their differences and challenges."
The Master of Ceremonies will be Jerry Howarth, Voice of the Toronto Blue Jays, with David Eng, national championship MVP and gold medalist in the Canadian Wheelchair Basketball League, as tonight's keynote speaker.
Special guests include Christine Elliott, Member of Parliament and disability advocate, Paul Rosen, motivational speaker and former Sledge Hockey Paralympian, Jeff Thiessen, award-winning journalist and Paralympic athlete, Abdi Dini, team member of David Eng, Wayne Primeau, free-agent NHL Player, Brian Muir, NHL Player and 2001 Stanley Cup winning team member of the Colorado Avalanches, Kerry Goulet, International Hockey Hall of Famer and co-founder of StopConcussions.com, Paul Duerden, International Volleyball Player, and Dr. Arlette Lefebvre, founder of Ability Online.
Entertainment will be provided by Team Canada's Acrobatic Gymnastics team and a musical performance by Canadian singer, Maddy Rodriguez.
This year Ability Online launched "Ability Gives" to help families obtain much-needed medical devises, and mobility and communication aids. Provided through donations and grants, the Ability Gives program is an initiative that was started as an extra means for those who are less fortunate.
Ability Online is a registered, Charitable Organization that has been operating in Canada since 1992 and is built on relationships with over 200 community and healthcare partnerships across North America. It provides a unique, online community that enriches the lives of children and youth living with disabilities or chronic, acute illnesses. Within its secure and monitored environment, members have the opportunity to meet, learn, develop skills and enjoy the company of others who have faced similar challenges. For more information please visit www.abilityonline.org
SOURCE: Ability OnlineFor further information:
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