Rotary Club of Fergus Elora's Support for Children with Disabilities

The Rotary Club of Fergus Elora has long been a supporter of children with disabilities. In the early days of the club dating back to the late ‘60s each member, for a week, was required to pick up and drive local children to a therapeutic centre in Guelph sponsored by that city’s club.Another member would pick the children up later in the day. There were as many as four or five kids each with special needs that piled into the car for the drive to and from the Guelph centre.The car was often filled with songs, laughter and sometimes tears. As Rotarians we felt honoured to undertake such a small part in lending a hand. Those car rides brought joy to everyone involved.
When the Guelph Centre closed, some of the parents were able to drive their children to the Rotary Children’s Centre in Kitchener. Others were left without the means. Accordingly, in 2000 our club approached the Kitchener centre about setting up a satellite location in Fergus. The answer was positive, provided we could come up with $75,000 over three years. This would pay for the location, a physiotherapist and an occupational therapist for a day a week. It would also provide a link to the Kitchener centre and all the medical expertise that it provides.
We took up the challenge and the centre in Fergus continues to operate to this day. It is now located in the Groves Mill building operating seven days a week and last year assisted over 500 local children. The centre is now called KidsAbility and specifically it has become a lifeline of hope to all that need its service.
Submitted by Leanne Iravani 
Rotary Club of Fergus Elora