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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Variety the Children’s Charity of Georgia Celebrates the Season of Giving, Marks Disabilities Day with Gift of Mobility

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Variety the Children’s Charity of Georgia Celebrates the Season of Giving,

Marks Disabilities Day with Gift of Mobility

ATLANTA (November 22, 2011) – On December 3, Variety the Children’s Charity of Georgia brings festive fun to area families as the organization hosts its annual holiday party and makes a special donation. Variety of Georgia will join a nationwide effort of 14 Variety chapters, or “Tents,” to observe the International Day of Persons with Disabilities by presenting a specially designed adaptive bicycle to a local child with disabilities during its yearly holiday event.

The seasonal party and bike presentation will be held at Movies ATL at 3760 Princeton Lakes Pkwy in Atlanta where the organization hosts 150 deserving families for a day of celebration and giving. Kids can experience the joy of the season with a special movie screening, visits with Santa Claus, holiday gifts and more. At 10:00 a.m., Variety of Georgia will give the gift of mobility to Hayden McCurdy, as she receives a custom adaptive bike. Diagnosed with Angelman syndrome, Hayden is a bright, three-year-old girl who lights up any room she enters.

Angelman syndrome is a neuro-genetic disorder characterized by intellectual and developmental delays, sleep disturbances, seizures, jerky movements, frequent laughter or smiling and a happy demeanor. Though Hayden is not able to speak, and has been unable walk independently for the majority of her life, she enjoys play like any other child. Her parents and her sister are quite active, and Hayden has the same drive and desire to be outside and mobile.

The mobility bike from Variety of Georgia will help Hayden continue to realize her goals of keeping up with her peers and enjoying the outdoors with her family. Recently, she was loaned a mobility bike for a month and enjoyed using it to play with her sister and the rest of her family. According to her physical therapist, she has made tremendous progress with the mobility bike. Namely, Hayden has made great strides in her pre-walking abilities and has gained a lot of vertical alignment stability; she is now even able to walk several steps on her own. With the confidence of being mobile, her overall disposition has also improved since using the bike.

To date, Variety of Georgia has given 38 mobility bikes to deserving children and organizations across the state. In 2011 alone, the organization estimates it has impacted over 3,000 children through its donations.

“Variety Kids on the Go! not only helps kids gain mobility, confidence, freedom and independence; it gives them the chance to join in the life of their community,” said Chief Barker Susan Lanier. Every child that we can give the gift of mobility is an investment in improving the future for everyone.”

The United Nations’ International Day of Persons with Disabilities is an annual occasion to reaffirm and draw attention to the rights of people who live with disabilities worldwide. Variety, through its “Kids on the Go!” initiative, regularly assists families in procuring durable medical equipment and services designed to increase access for a child with limited mobility to his or her community, as well as build his or her sense of independence, when the family cannot afford it and insurance denies aid.

The focus of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities is a global expression of local efforts by Variety across the United States, she noted. According to U.N. Enable, “Experience shows that when persons with disabilities are empowered to participate and lead the process of development, their entire community benefits, as their involvement creates opportunities for everyone – with or without a disability.”

Variety Tents participating in the International Day of Persons with Disabilities include: Los Angeles, San Francisco and Palm Desert, Calif.; Colorado; Florida; Georgia; Illinois; Iowa; Detroit; Kansas City and St. Louis, Mo.; Buffalo and Western New York; Texas; and Wisconsin.

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About Variety the Children’s Charity

Variety the Children’s Charity is a nonprofit corporation dedicated to promoting and protecting the health and well-being of children around the world. Through our network of 43 Tents (or Chapters) in 13 countries, Variety reaches into communities across the globe to offer financial assistance and services to children and organizations that serve children with special needs.

Variety of Georgia supports individual children in Georgia who may be challenged by physical and/or mental disabilities, poverty, abuse or neglect and children’s organizations that benefit underprivileged, at-risk and special-needs children. To learn more about this organization, please visit www.varietyofgeorgia.org.
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