Our History

A mother is pictured looking on as her son's therapist is demonstrating how to make a sentence using an iPad used to provide Augmentative Communication through technology. A new innovative program called GoBabyGo is introduced. A young girl is pictured in a ride on car learning mobility supporting by her therapist. Staff and community partners gather together to cut the ribbon outside of KidsAbility's Centre for Autism at the grand opening celebration held in Kitchener.

2010s - 2020s


2011

To better serve children and families in Kitchener, in June, KidsAbility opens a new 5,200-square-foot site inside The Family Centre located at 65 Hanson Avenue in Kitchener.
 

2012    

KidsAbility, alongside 11 other children’s treatment centres, implements leading-edge technology known as GoldCare. Thanks to a one-time grant of $2.5 million from the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, this new system allows for multidisciplinary teams to conduct a team
assessment, develop an integrated plan of care, share important information, view clinical notes and monitor each child’s and family’s progress.

2013

In March, KidsAbility is awarded Exemplary Standing through Accreditation Canada, the highest accreditation possible, recognizing our
commitment to excellence in governance, leadership and client services.

After 27 years at the helm, KidsAbility bids farewell to chief executive officer, Stephen Swatridge, and welcomes Linda Kenny in April.

Through an increase in funding from the province, KidsAbility launches Spark!. This program provides brief and rapid intervention to children with mild to moderate needs who otherwise may age out of the system. This program helps to move 293 children off the waiting list.
 

2014

O March 23, KidsAbility is honoured to host the President of Rotary International, Gary C. K. Huang, and his wife. KidsAbility officially opens our new Centre for Autism in Kitchener on March 31. This purpose-built space is designed specifically for children with autism and welcomes community partners Waterloo Region Family Network, Autism Services Waterloo Region, Facile and Extend-a-Family. On November 10, KidsAbility celebrates the opening of its newest dedicated autism site benefiting our children and families in Cambridge.

Located on Langs Drive, the new facility is custom-built to meet the needs of our complex children.

A pilot program to provide speech services for our complex clients in Guelph launches in partnership with WeeTalk.

2015

Families are joined in January by members of the Rotary Club of Fergus-Elora, staff, volunteers and community partners to cut the ribbon a
new custom-built space to better serve the over 100 children who benefit from services offered by KidsAbility in Fergus.

Stay and Play, a program developed in Guelph-Wellington through a partnership with KidsAbility and St. Joe’s, expands across Ontario in
December.

2016

Go Baby Go! launches at KidsAbility thanks to funding through KidsAbility Foundation. Staff Sarah Brown and Janice Gregson begin to modify loanable toy ride-on cars for children with crawling and walking problems, empowering them to be part of the action.

KidsAbility’s Resource Centre launches a new online equipment-lending program. Equipment can now be borrowed and tracked
electronically.

KidsAbility leads the way with a new program “Partnering 4 Change in Child Care” (P4C) after receiving funding from the Region of Waterloo for a one-year pilot project. P4C helps facilitate inclusive education by working in partnership with educators in the classroom to provide OT services to support every student.

2017

As part of the new Ontario Autism Program, KidsAbility, in partnership with the Children’s Treatment Centre of Simcoe York, launches a new Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnostic and Assessment team and partners with the Canadian Mental Health Association of Waterloo-Wellington to enhance capacity of CMHA’s existing ASD team.

60 Years of Potential Realized is celebrated throughout the community with an art show, events and reception at Whistle Bear. It was also marked with a tree planting dedication to commemorate the over 60,000 children and youth with special needs who have been given the skills and support that they need to realize their potential.

In October, the grand opening celebration of KidsAbility’s new Cambridge Hub brought together our early years, school and autism teams,community partners, donors, families, and dignitaries, as we cut the ribbon on our newest site.

2018

Behaviour Consults begin to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to support KidsAbility teams with advice, resource development, strategies and recommendations for working with clients with behaviour challenges.

KidsAbility grows in Guelph with the grand opening of the new Guelph Hub. By bringing all of the teams under one roof, we are stronger together.

Our Stories

Emma Belanger and Erin Broxterman
Clemmer Family
Hayes Family
Jerry Hunter
Linda Kenny
Lotufo Family 
Nate McCarthy
Mishi Uddon