Each year the Variety Show of Hearts Telethon helps children with special needs in B.C., and presents heart-warming stories of children from across the province.
Here are some magic moments from the 2019 Variety Show of Hearts Telethon:
WATCH: Magic moments: Baillie
Baillie has Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a form of muscular dystrophy that causes damage to her peripheral nerves. There is no cure for CMT, but Variety has helped cover the cost of physiotherapy sessions, and her first pair of orthotics to help keep her strong. Baillie loves to sing, and to help celebrate this, she and her family will experience a fantastic production of Align Entertainment’s Annie: The Musical, performed at the Michael J. Fox Theatre.
WATCH: Magic moments: Esabella
Esabella is a 13-year-old who is receiving funding from Variety for tuition at an alternative school in North Vancouver. Esabella was entering into Grade 2 when she had a Psychoeducational Assessment and was diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD. The learning disabilities she suffered from made her the target of bullies and forced her family to find alternative education. Esabella is a blossoming actress, writer and filmmaker. Screen Siren Pictures, a local film and television production company, will be providing Esabella with a unique behind-the-scenes experience for one of their upcoming productions.
WATCH: Magic moments: Nathan
Nathan is an 18-year old boy who has a history of dystonic type cerebral palsy and relies on a motorized wheelchair for mobility. Variety helped provide funds to replace a wheelchair ramp for Nathan, as his old one was in dire need of replacing. Thanks to Skydive Vancouver, Nathan will get to experience the adventure of a lifetime when he goes on a tandem skydive jump that is suited to his unique special needs. Variety and Global BC will be on-hand in the spring when Nathan makes his incredible first jump with Skydive Vancouver.
WATCH: Magic moments: Bryan
Bryan suffers from hearing loss and struggled with his hearing aids in social situations. But thanks to Variety, a special device allows Bryan to participate socially, and has allowed his confidence and independence to grow. Bryan, who helped host today’s Show of Hearts, was whisked away in a high-performance automobile for a unique trip through the Lower Mainland. Kevin Gordon, who runs Convertus, one of the top automotive digital marketing agencies in Canada, loves to give back to the community and thrill kids with his high-performance sports cars.
WATCH: Magic moments Mathew
Mathew has several challenges, including FASD, ADHD, Anxiety and OCD. Knowing Mathew needed extra help, his mother turned to Variety – The Children’s Charity, who helped cover the cost of weekly speech and language sessions, allowing him to work on his expressive language skills. Mathew is the first recipient of the Leah Wiebe Memorial Grant, a grant Variety established in honour of Leah to help support families in need of Speech Therapy.
WATCH: Magic moments Alex
Alex is a little boy from Nanaimo who has significantly low muscle tone. Thanks to a grant from Variety, Alex has received a KidsWalk walker, which will help promote mobility, and hopefully allow Alex to walk independently in the future. Alex will get a fantastic tactile experience courtesy of the Vancouver Aquarium. The Vancouver Aquarium offers up special behind-the-scenes programs that allow kids to marvel at undersea marine life.
WATCH: Magic moments Heston
Heston suffers from Type 3 MPS, a rare, degenerative disease. He cannot talk, and has lost the ability to walk. A child with MPS has a life expectancy of 10-12 years, and Heston will turn 9 this year. Thanks to donations from Variety, his family is able to provide the love and specialized support he needs. The Show of Hearts wants to help Heston’s family create some special moments, so Variety’s friends at Tigh Na-Mara Seaside Resort and Spa are providing Heston and his family with a magical weekend of fun and relaxation at the resort’s Parksville location.
© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.