Ceridian Cares in the Community

Recipient Stories

The mission of Ceridian Cares is to be an employee-driven charity that makes a difference by supporting people and improving the communities in which we live and work.

The following Ceridian Cares recipients agreed to share their stories.

Christine is Sitting Pretty

A variety of immunological diseases resulted in mobility issues for Christine. Read to discover how Ceridian Cares helped to ease some of her discomfort.

Help for Teri-Jade

Single parent Teri-Jade struggles to make ends meet for her family. Find out how Ceridian Cares was able to help alleviate some of her stress.

Samantha’s New Start

2016 brought many new starts for Samantha and her family. Keep reading to find out how Ceridian Cares helped set this mom up for success.

Alyssa Enjoys the Outdoors

Alyssa loves nature, the outdoors and playing outside. Due to signs of global development delay, she cannot interact as someone her age normally would, and as a result is unable to be left without supervision. Read on to learn how Ceridian Cares helped to make her dream of riding a bike a reality.

Aliza Achieves Independence

A behavioural therapist convinced Aliza Bernstein’s family that the Autistic teen was ready for more independence. Read on to discover how Ceridian Cares helped provide her with the opportunity to build these skills and maximize her potential.

Zachary Enjoys Summer Camp

Zachary has Cerebral Palsy Quadriplegia. Due to the constant supervision and care he requires, a typical camp setting wasn’t an option. Read how Ceridian Cares was able to help keep Zach moving over the summer.

Catherine's Mind at Ease

With the help of Ceridian Cares, Catherine was able to ensure she and her son were taken care of.

The YWCA of Montréal Shares Their Gratitude

Ceridian Cares is proud to have offered support to the women and children of the YWCA of Montréal Mother’s Work Integration Program.

Luca's Story

Luca is a beautiful little boy who fought against all odds to survive a tragic accident. Now he strives to build his strength every day. Watch how Ceridian Cares helped by providing him with a standing device.

A Wheelchair Accessible van for Dora

Ceridian Cares was instrumental in providing a wheelchair accessible van for Dora, a single mother 3 from Greater Vancouver!

Hard Fitting Dentures for Gerry

Ceridian Cares helped give Gerry a new and improved smile, brightening the lives of those who know him!

A Mattress & Bed Frame for Kordé

With the help of Ceridian Cares, Kordé will be able to sleep on a new, clean bed with a frame and have warm winter gear. Find out what makes this little man so special

A Wheelchair Lift for Kristal

Kristal was born with Cerebral Palsy and lives at home with her mother Carol. Even though she is confined to a wheelchair, this doesn’t stop Kristal from waking up every morning with a smile, and going to bed every night with a smile.

Independence for Alex

Alex has Cerebral Palsy, which impacts his use of his body and his vision. At 15, Alexander was getting too big for his parents to carry around, and his wheelchair did not fit properly through the bedroom door or bathroom door. Check out how Ceridian Cares made a difference.

Ethan Gets an iPad

When Carie Spagnoli first heard about Ceridian Cares, little did she know she would soon find out exactly how much Ceridian cares.

A Lift Chair for John

In March 2014, Ceridian Cares received an application from Linda Waldron, requesting assistance. Linda’s husband, John, suffers from pain in his legs and back that makes it difficult for him to move from a seated to standing position.

Siloam Mission & Ceridian Cares: Feeding the Community

For more than 27 years, Siloam Mission has been an essential service for those less fortunate in Winnipeg. Find out how Ceridian Cares made a huge difference to the Meal Program at Siloam Mission, improving the quality of life in the community.

Eden's Journey

Eden has a rare genetic disorder that requires regular visits to the hospital. The closest children’s hospital is a 6-hour drive away, and in the winter months, this can be a daunting journey. Find out how Ceridian Cares made the road a little easier for her family.

Faith Goes to Camp

Faith has never been to summer camp. She loves to be with kids but, due to her need for 1:1 support, hasn’t had the chance to participate in a camp experience. Check out how Ceridian Cares made one girl’s summer a success.

Lifting Jasmine

Jasmine requires a wheelchair to get around. Her parents’ bungalow is great for moving around inside the house, but the steps to get in the front door creates challenges. Watch how Ceridian Cares made a difference for the whole family.

News

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Christine is Sitting Pretty

Various immunological diseases, including Neuromyelitis Optica which has rendered her completely blind, cause Christine to live with discomfort and chronic joint pain. This discomfort put her in need of a customized chair lift, as her conditions make it very difficult for her to get in and out of a chair.

Although unable to work, Christine is very social and active in her community. In addition to being a Toastmaster and member of a local Rotary Club, Christine also organizes fundraisers for the Vision Impaired Resource Network. Her various volunteer activities lead to many hours spent on the phone canvasing for donations and publicizing information about charitable events. Doing so in a standard chair substantially increases her pain and risk of injury.

A former Ceridian employee, Christine heard about Ceridian Cares through friends that still work for the organization. Unable to afford a customized chair on her own, Christine applied for a grant and was delighted when it was approved. Thanks to the generosity of Ceridian Cares, Christine is now able to engage with her community in comfort. Christine is grateful to Ceridian Cares and says her new chair is like sitting on a cloud!

Christine is Sitting Pretty

Catherine’s Mind at Ease

Catherine’s Mind at Ease

Catherine is a full-time student and single mother to her young son. She was financially challenged with paying for her education and meeting her monthly living expenses. Her determination to complete her education and provide a better life for her son kept her going. However, the cost of necessary items such as food, clothing and diapers often meant that she couldn’t afford to put her son in daycare, purchase textbooks, or to fill the car with gas. This resulted in Catherine missing school, and her son missing out on important interactions with other children.

A grant from Ceridian Cares allowed Catherine to ease her financial burden, and regularly attend school with the hope of achieving her goal to enhance the quality of life for herself and her son.

Zachary Enjoys Summer Camp

Zachary Enjoys Summer Camp

Zachary Rayment has Cerebral Palsy Quadriplegia, which requires constant supervision and care. Although he is quadriplegic, Zach has reasonable mobility and loves to play, draw and sing. As one of five children, Zachary’s parents wanted him to be able to enjoy a fun, social camp experience, like his siblings. However, the amount of care Zachary requires meant that a typical summer camp wasn’t an option for him. With the help of Ceridian Cares, Zachary was able to attend the 6-week Conductive Education Summer camp organized by March of Dimes Canada. At camp, Zach was able to sing songs, do crafts, experience dramatic play and physical exercise, all while bonding with other children and being safely supported.

Catherine’s Mind at Ease

Catherine’s Mind at Ease

Catherine is a full-time student and single mother to her young son. She was financially challenged with paying for her education and meeting her monthly living expenses. Her determination to complete her education and provide a better life for her son kept her going. However, the cost of necessary items such as food, clothing and diapers often meant that she couldn’t afford to put her son in daycare, purchase textbooks, or to fill the car with gas. This resulted in Catherine missing school, and her son missing out on important interactions with other children.

A grant from Ceridian Cares allowed Catherine to ease her financial burden, and regularly attend school with the hope of achieving her goal to enhance the quality of life for herself and her son.

The YWCA of Montréal Shares Their Gratitude

The YWCA of Montréal Shares Their Gratitude

Thank you so much for the grants given to the participants of the YWCA of Montréal Mother’s Work Integration Program. The gift certificates have provided them with help in their struggle to fight poverty and to improve the quality of life for their families. These grants have been blessings for the moms and their kids. They deal with struggles each week, so these gift certificates really lighten their load so they can focus on their families, their job hunt, or schooling.

On behalf of the Y des femmes de Montreal, we thank you for your contributions to these women and their families.

Regards,
Danielle Hirsh
Agente d’Animation de 2 X 2 Programme Parascolaire

Hard Fitting Dentures for Gerry

A Hard Fitting Dentures for Gerry

Gerry has been given a reason to smile! He was unable to use his dentures, but thanks to the generous support of Ceridian Cares, funding was approved for the hard fitting of his artificial teeth.

The positive impact this made on his life was immediately evident in his ability to eat solid food again, sleep more soundly and entertain his friends with his great sense of humour.

Gerry is looking forward to enjoying a hearty meal of steak and vegetables, now that he “can really chew”, at his favourite restaurant, Murray’s.

Ceridian Cares helped give Gerry a new and improved smile, brightening the lives of those who know him!

A Wheelchair Accessible Van for Dora

A Wheelchair Accessible Van for Dora

Dora Lam is a support worker who lives in Greater Vancouver. She is a single parent, raising three children: Olivia, Maggie, and Ivan.

Her 12-year-old daughter, Olivia, has several medical conditions that limit Olivia’s mobility. Dora has a slight frame, and until recently she had been lifting her daughter in and out of their vehicle whenever Olivia required transport. Olivia had grown to the point where Dora was no longer able to lift her. Dora began to rely on HandiDart, the local public wheelchair-enabled transit service, whenever she wanted to take Olivia out of the house.

Dora needed a wheelchair accessible van in order to continue to be able to get Olivia to various medical appointments. Due to her limited income, she applied to several charitable organizations for assistance. In some cases, she was deemed ineligible because Olivia did not actually require a wheelchair due to medical conditions, it was only required in order to allow Olivia’s mother to transport her.

Ceridian Cares, along with the CKNW Fund and Variety Club, contributed to enable Dora to purchase the vehicle she needs to continue to care for her daughter.

Hard Fitting Dentures for Gerry

A Hard Fitting Dentures for Gerry

Gerry has been given a reason to smile! He was unable to use his dentures, but thanks to the generous support of Ceridian Cares, funding was approved for the hard fitting of his artificial teeth.

The positive impact this made on his life was immediately evident in his ability to eat solid food again, sleep more soundly and entertain his friends with his great sense of humour.

Gerry is looking forward to enjoying a hearty meal of steak and vegetables, now that he “can really chew”, at his favourite restaurant, Murray’s.

Ceridian Cares helped give Gerry a new and improved smile, brightening the lives of those who know him!

A Mattress & Bed Frame for Kordé

This is Kordé Myles.

Bed for Kordé

He's what we call our wonder baby. Our Superman.

Kordé has had a rough start to life. He was born at 28 weeks weighing 1100g and spent 4 month in the hospital. When he finally was able to go home, he was sent home on portable oxygen. But our little man is a fighter. He was meeting his corrected milestones but in December of 2010 Kordé came down with a very bad case of pneumonia which led to his hospitalization.

After 2 days in the hospital he came home and he was different; he was no longer that huggable, laughing, eat everything, inquisitive little boy. He was now a high strung, easily upset child who screamed and cried and threw things, and didn't want anyone touching him. He wouldn't play with anyone. He was engrossed in watching things spin, bouncing on his toes and flapping his arms. He wouldn't make eye contact and had stopped babbling and talking. He lost all his words.

I knew something was wrong with my child. By April of 2011, Kordé was diagnosed with ASD, PPD NOS (Pervasive Developmental Disorder Non Otherwise Specified)

That started another long journey that has been very, very hard.

When Kordé was almost 6 years old; he was 4'2" tall and weighed 80+lbs. Kordé is a big boy and can be aggressive and plays rough. One day, he destroyed his bedroom set and I didn’t know how I would be able to get him a new one.

I found out about Ceridian Cares in a Facebook group I "liked" and am so glad I did. It’s refreshing to know people and companies care and that help is available when you look for it.

With the help of Ceridian Cares, Kordé will be able to sleep on a bed that doesn't smell faintly of urine, that isn't on the floor because it doesn't have a frame. He will have warmer winter wear and be able to engage in recreational activities that will get him moving. I won't have to worry about "going without" for now because of the help received.

Kordé is our special little man. I don't mind sharing him and his story, such that it is, if it will help anyone in any way.

THANK YOU CERIDIAN CARES for your generosity in making things possible for an amazing little boy.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Kordé & Kena

A Wheelchair Lift for Kristal

A Wheelchar Lift for Kristal

Kristal was born with Cerebral Palsy and lives at home with her mother, Carol. Even though she is confined to a wheelchair, this doesn’t stop Kristal from waking up every morning with a smile, and going to bed every night with a smile. She is a very happy person who looks forward to every day.

Unfortunately, Kristal’s old outdoor wheelchair lift was in need of replacement. It was in very bad shape, and quite rusted. It had become a safety concern. This was the only means of exiting and entering her home and without it, Kristal was not able to get out, into the community.

Since Kristal’s mother has her own disabilities, which are preventing her from returning to work, the family required extra funds to assist with purchasing an outdoor lift. A simple ramp would not suffice in this case. Carol would not be able to maneuver the wheelchair for Kristal and their yard is not large enough to accommodate a ramp, so an outdoor lift is their only option.

Carol heard about Ceridian Cares through her health care worker, and applied for a grant in October 2015. When they received a letter from Ceridian Cares just before Christmas 2015 telling them that their application had been approved for 100% of the cost of the new lift, Carol and Kristal were overwhelmed with joy. Kristal’s smile is testament to that!

Ethan Gets an iPad

Ethan Gets an iPad

When Carie Spagnoli first heard about Ceridian Cares, little did she know she would soon find out exactly how much Ceridian cares. As well as being a mom to her son, Ethan, Carie works full time as an Implementation Consultant. Juggling both work and kids is hard enough for any working parent, but, shortly before Ethan’s third birthday, he suffered a seizure and Carie had the additional challenge of finding out that he was autistic.

Ethan’s autism requires special learning, even to do things that average kids pick up naturally, like talking or learning how to dress. To help Ethan learn, Carie and Ethan attend 16 to 20 hours of therapy per week. Since the therapy is not government funded, Carie has had to make many sacrifices over the years just to make ends meet. For example, she moved up north where housing prices are lower, and for her birthday, she often asks for gifts for Ethan!

Thanks to a lot of hard work, 8-year old Ethan is currently in grade 3, attending a regular school with some assistance. To help Ethan out, Carie initiated a social club at school, run by Ethan’s therapist where Ethan can put into practice the skills that he learns in his therapy sessions. Research has shown that one of the best learning tools for autistic children is the iPad, along with several apps designed specifically for learning (iLanguage, iConversation, iSentence, and iQuestion). These programs help autistic children learn to pick up on social cues, engage in play with other children, and initiate conversations – some of the common problems faced by those with autism. Other programs help with math and comprehension. Using the iPad also teaches turn-taking, use of gestures to communicate, play with objects, and social attention to partners during play.

The iPad was very helpful to Ethan during therapy, but it soon became obvious that having his own iPad at home would help take his therapy to the next level. Many of the apps can be used by two people at a time, making it the perfect toy for play dates with other children. During school holidays, the iPad could help stimulate and teach Ethan, when he was neither in school nor in therapy. Unfortunately, since the therapy itself cost so much money and their budget was already tight, Carie couldn’t afford to buy Ethan one of his own. After hearing about Ceridian Cares, Carie decided to apply for some assistance to help get Ethan the tools he needs.

Traci Cimino and Sean Setiawan, co-chairs of the Markham Ceridian Cares Committee, recall receiving the application for assistance. “Our committee had the honour of reviewing Carie’s application. The application was well-written and provided enough information for the committee to get a sense of how the funds would benefit Carie, her son, and their community. We were moved by their situation - a single mother looking to provide treatment for her son. Compared to the amount Carrie invests in her son, we felt the request was relatively small and ultimately undeniable. We were happy to be able to make a difference in their lives.”

Thanks to Ceridian Cares, Carie and Ethan recently received a new iPad, and Ethan just loves using it! Since Ethan has a photographic memory, Carie is constantly on the look out for new apps; as soon as he has memorized a program, he needs to switch to a new one to keep learning. With the school breaks, Carie has found the new iPad and its apps very helpful, not only to help Ethan learn, but to keep him busy and to better enjoy playing with other children.

A Lift Chair for John

A Lift Chair for John

In March 2014, Ceridian Cares received an application from Linda Waldron, requesting assistance. Linda’s husband, John, suffers from pain in his legs and back that makes it difficult for him to move from a seated to standing position. For many years, John had been using a mechanical lift chair to aid his mobility. Over the years, the chair had been fixed many times, but was now beyond repair and could not be used. Linda reported that, as a result, John had fallen several times. The cost to replace the chair posed a financial burden for John and Linda, so they turned to Ceridian Cares.

John and Linda’s application was reviewed by the Markham Ceridian Cares Committee and was unanimously approved. After receiving a new lift chair, Linda sent the following note to Ceridian Cares:

"John and I would like to thank you for the very generous grant we received from Ceridian Cares. The chair has been such a blessing to John as he had been using a broken chair for a year or more. Due to pain in his legs and back and difficulties with breathing, sleeping in the bed can be difficult some nights and the chair also gives him another option to get comfortable and sleep. Having a lift chair again has also reduced his fear and risk of falling. The chair has made daily living so much better and we truly are grateful, and feel very blessed to have been given this gift."

Ceridian Cares is thrilled to learn that the financial assistance provided to this couple has had such a positive impact on their quality of life.

Independence for Alex

The Chiasson family has 5 members: mom, dad, 2 daughters and a son named Alexander. Alexander has Cerebral Palsy, a condition that has impacts his functional use of all extremities, trunk control and vision. He relies on a power wheelchair to get around. The family works hard to find resources to support their son with special needs. Their goal is to provide Alex with independence and access to a positive life.

At 15, Alexander was getting too big for his parents to carry around, and his wheelchair did not fit properly through the bedroom door or bathroom door. The Chiasson family needed to do some renovations so that Alex could get around inside the house.

The Chiasson family learned about the Ceridian Cares program through their support system at the IWK Children’s Hospital and applied for assistance with home renovations in early 2014.

"This was one of the easiest applicants we have received to date," said Committee Chair, Linda MacInnis-Sedge. "The whole committee was on board to support this family in their home renovations. The application was well-written and easily showed us how we can make a difference in this family's day to day lives. We all wanted to help this teenaged boy to gain some independence and save some wear and tear on the parents, who clearly work very hard for their family."

The renovations were completed in April 2014. "Alexander is SO happy about his new bathroom!” says his mom. “For the first time, he can drive into the bathroom with his wheelchair. And he loves the sink. Sometimes, he goes into the bathroom just to play in the water! Alex also loves being able to drive into his bedroom without grinding the side of the doorframe with his wheelchair."

"Thank you so much Ceridian Cares for all your help, making this bathroom possible! We will be forever grateful for your help!"

It was our pleasure to work with this lovely family and wish them all the best in the future!

Independence for Alex

Siloam Mission & Ceridian Cares: Feeding the Community

For more than 27 years, Siloam Mission has become an essential service for the homeless and those less fortunate in Winnipeg. Providing a broad range of programs and services free of charge, the organization sees 600+ men, women and children come though the doors each day.

The Meal Program at Siloam Mission provides families with access to nutritious meals in a climate-controlled environment. In 2014, Siloam provided 420,730 meals, 10,298 bagged lunches, and 3,884 emergency meal hampers. And the demand for meals increases with each year.

Ceridian Cares believes that everyone should have access to the basics of food, clothing and shelter. That's why, in 2015, Ceridian Cares decided to make a difference, granting $25,000 to sponsor the Meal Program at Siloam Mission. This grant helped feed hundreds of families and improved their quality of life.

Aliza Achieves Independence

Aliza Achieves Independence

Aliza Bernstein was diagnosed with Autism shortly before her third birthday. At that time, her speech wasn’t developing as it should, and she was losing the few words she had. Since then, she has made tremendous gains. Now 16 years old, Aliza attends a special high school where she works on reading comprehension and basic math skills. There is hope that she will enter a coop program for basic job training. However, there are still many challenges – Aliza requires constant encouragement to use language to express herself, and she has compulsive tendencies that interfere with her day to day life.

Working with a behavioural therapist, it became evident that Aliza was ready for more independence. The therapist suggested that a way to develop this independence was to attend an overnight camp. While the family initially resisted the idea since Aliza had never spent even one day away from them, they eventually decided to send Aliza to camp – for five and a half weeks. However, the cost of camp, along with a therapist to help prepare both Aliza and the camp staff became an obstacle for the family. Help wasn’t as readily available as the family thought – there were few financial supports, and they were left to manage on their own. Hearing about Ceridian Cares through a York Region office that deals with disabilities, the family applied for a grant. They were ecstatic to learn that Ceridian Cares would help cover the cost of the camp fees and therapist.

The family is happy to report that camp was a success – Aliza had an incredible summer! At camp, Aliza developed a sense of control over herself and her belongings, learned to function in a group and perhaps most importantly, built relationships and connections with other children her age.

Ceridian Cares was fortunate to have Aliza’s mother, Miriam, join us at the first annual Dave MacKay Memorial Golf Tournament on September 21, 2016 to share the positive impact that the charity has had not only on Aliza, but on the entire Bernstein family.

Alyssa Enjoys the Outdoors

Alyssa Enjoys the Outdoors

Alyssa loves the things any other child her age does – nature, the outdoors, and playing outside. However, Alyssa shows signs of global development delay, and while she can comprehend what happens in the environment around her, she is unable to interact the way someone her age normally would. Enabling Alyssa to experience the things that bring her joy takes planning and preparation. She needs constant supervision while playing and being outdoors. Riding a bike was a dream for Alyssa, and with the help of a grant from Ceridian Cares, it became a reality.

Ceridian Cares provided funding for Alyssa to receive a custom-made tricycle that allows her to ‘drive’, while giving ultimate control to steer and stop the bike when required to another individual. The tricycle provides Alyssa the ability to enjoy the outdoors and live her dream of riding a bicycle, all while keeping her safety in mind. She’s thrilled with her new-found freedom!

Help for Teri-Jade

Help for Teri-Jade

As a single parent to six children, four of whom she provides daily care for, Teri-Jade has faced a number of financial and emotional stresses. With two of her children requiring special care and attention, Teri-Jade has been unable to work. Attending school and job readiness workshops in order to further her education and work towards a brighter future for her family, Teri-Jade dreams of becoming an Interior Designer, while struggling to meet her family’s immediate needs. With the help of a social worker, Teri-Jade applied for a grant from Ceridian Cares to provide food, clothing and other necessities for her family. Seeing an opportunity to offer immediate relief to a family in need, Ceridian Cares was happy to provide Teri-Jade over $1000 in gift cards to purchase essential items for the family.

Samantha’s New Start

Samantha’s New Start

Samantha is a mom to two young daughters, aged 1 ½ and 3 ½, one of whom has a minor blood disorder that requires occasional visits to Sick Kids Hospital in Vancouver. Samantha and her daughters were living in a very crowded space, along with Samantha’s parents. In August 2016, Samantha was offered a subsidized housing unit through the Elizabeth Fry Society. Around this same time, Samantha also began studies at Thompson Rivers University, after recently completing Grade 12 equivalency.

With everything this busy mom had on her plate, Ceridian Cares was proud to provide Samantha with a grant to purchase furnishings and household items for her new apartment unit, as well as provide Samantha’s girls with some new clothing as they began a new start in their new home.