Our son, Ethan, is a curious, bright and sweet 4-year-old boy. Like other children his age, he likes to make crafts, play games, watch cartoons and especially loves to adventure. Ethan explores his world with his power wheelchair because he has a disease called Nemaline Myopathy, which causes his muscles to be weak resulting in him being unable to walk or stand independently. Breathing, swallowing and just moving are extremely difficult for him. Luckily, his beloved wheelchair has opened up his world and his independence, and he lights up the moment he starts moving.

Our world isn’t always the most wheelchair friendly place and we have a difficult time finding activities for him that he can do in his wheelchair. That is why we were so happy to get involved in PISE’s Power Physical Literacy program. When Ethan first started coming to the program, he was extremely shy and hesitant to join in with the activities. He is an only child who hasn’t had the opportunity to play in big groups as we had to be very careful with his health in his first couple years of life and spent a lot of time in and out of hospital and therapy appointments. Over time, he grew to trust his instructors and enjoy the games. He loves being around other kids in wheelchairs too and his confidence has grown so much from participating in this program.

Ethan always looks forward to playing with his friends at PISE. When he’s there, he knows he is always going to have a fun time with people who encourage and play with him. As his parents, we absolutely love watching him play and thrive in a program that is completely accessible, works around his limitations and supports him so he can have fun and just be a kid!

~May Sandvar

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