BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS
We’ve been getting children with disabilities off the sidelines and onto the field since 1945. Through sports, fitness, training, and skills development programs, we break down barriers to participation and foster accessibility and inclusiveness for kids and their families across our province.
Variety International – the girl that inspired a movement
Christmas Eve, 1928. In the Sheridan Square Theatre in Pittsburgh, an infant was discovered with only a note pleading for her safety. With no way to track down her mother, the members of the Variety Club took little Catherine in and funded her living expenses and education.
Something had to be done to help disadvantaged children, and this one selfless act helped the world realize it. Catherine’s story made front-page news across the United States, inspired a feature film, and grew a small collective of show business managers into a multi-national children’s charity with 52 chapters in 14 countries around the world.
Variety International is now active in Australia, Barbados, Canada, Channel Islands, France, Great Britain, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States. Over 14,000 members and volunteers have raised over US $1.5 billion to give children of all ages a chance to thrive.
Variety Ontario – breaking down barriers to accessibility
In 1945, Variety – the Children’s Charity of Ontario was born. What started as a vocational school built in 1949 became our flagship location in Toronto. Our modern-day Variety Village location opened in 1981 as a world-class indoor sports facility built to nurture competitive spirits, and empower children with disabilities to be ambassadors for change in their communities.
Today, Variety helps Ontarians see ability differently with our trailblazing programming in reverse integration. Variety Village is one of the few places where able-bodied family and friends can get involved in a game of wheelchair basketball. Entire schools get the chance to try specialized equipment, feel a braille book, use a sports wheelchair and learn about communicating with a person who is deaf.
We’re just getting started.
We’re on a mission to bring inclusive programming to every child waiting on the sidelines.
We’ve come a long way and we’re still going strong.
Thanks to our community, corporate, foundation and government partners, we’ve given many thousands of children a place where they can feel included and participate.
Our partners appreciate that every child deserves a better life, regardless of their physical or intellectual abilities. They commit funds, time and resources to programming that helps children thrive into adolescence and adulthood.
Will you join us?
ALCS Medical Training
Cathedral Bluffs Yacht Club
Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities
Bloorview Kids’ Rehab
Canadian Mental Health Association
Spinal Cord Injury Ontario (formerly Canadian Paraplegic Association Ontario)
Disability Today Network
Iroquois Park Sports Centre
St. Stephen’s Community House
Shoppers Home Health Care
Rock Solid Productions Inc.
Geneva Centre for Autism
Ontario Blind Sports Association (OBSA)
Toronto Police Services Board Special Fund
Centennial College Alumni Association
Ontario Wheelchair Sports Association
Wheelchair Basketball Canada
Sun Valley Market
UHN Toronto Rehabilitation Institute
Bridgepoint Active Healthcare
The Sandbox Project
Rick Hansen Foundation
The Fox Theater
East Toronto Baseball
Wexford Agincourt Baseball
West Hill Baseball
East York Baseball
The Gazelles Track & Field Club
The Beaches Blue Devils
The Flying Angels
Eagle Beaver Sports
Qssis Banquet Hall
The Tara Inn