When it comes to choosing a charity to support, it helps to pick a cause that touches your heart and to truly understand where the money you’re donating is going. At Grandview, it doesn’t take long for you to see your generosity making real change in the lives of children and youth with disabilities. For…
When it comes to choosing a charity to support, it helps to pick a cause that touches your heart and to truly understand where the money you’re donating is going.
At Grandview, it doesn’t take long for you to see your generosity making real change in the lives of children and youth with disabilities.
For donor, HMA The BENEFITS People’s President, Barry Mount the choice to support Grandview Children’s Centre and Foundation is because of the kids and the devoted parents cheering them on every step of the way.
“When I look at the Grandview Kids… honest to God, they are just such happy kids. I see nothing but joy. It doesn’t matter whether they’re in a wheel chair or using a walker, they are smiling. At the same time I’m aware of the difficulty the parents have to go through,” Barry said. “Often many people react to kids with special needs with misunderstanding or fear. If people were informed enough to know that these kids are just like any other kids and may just require some unique approaches or considerations, there would be much more inclusivity. The families of children with special needs are doing awesome jobs; when you add some of the complexities that they face to the already challenging job of raising a child, you realize the life of dedication that the parents have to that child. I have the greatest admiration for that.” Barry thinks of himself as a very fortunate man. As a child he witnessed firsthand how a disability can affect a family. His father fell off a six-storey building, breaking his back, legs, arms, wrists, and severely damaging his pelvis and internal organs.
“I didn’t know Dad was disabled until I was in my teens. He was always just Dad to me, not my disabled father. He did everything other Dad’s did. He just had a little bit more difficulty doing it,” Barry said.
While his father dealt with everyday life managing his mobility challenges, his mother pursued an education receiving a college diploma followed by a university degree in social work at the age of 53.
She chose a career helping children and worked with the Children’s Aid Society for more than a decade.
“I’m very lucky to have had two very different parents,” said Barry. “I feel so fortunate in life. I am a Dad and am close with both of my children.”
Barry’s children never needed the services of Grandview. He said he doesn’t understand fully why he was so drawn to Grandview in the beginning but can understand why he continues to support the centre today.
“I feel I have been very fortunate in my life and when I see someone who may be generalized as the underdog, I want to do my best to encourage and assist in offering a helping hand; I think about how tough it is for the Mom and Dad who possess such a great love for their child and how challenging it would feel when that child doesn’t have the access to things that may help them succeed” he explained. “Grandview needs and deserves help from the community; offering services to children and families that are facing personal challenges is something that the community should feel obligated to help with.”
Barry is not just a donor to Grandview Kids. He has become a true friend, supporter and advocate.
As a member of the Rotary Club of Whitby Sunrise, Barry has most recently taken on the task of being a Grandview Ambassador.
“I’m trying to get all of Durham’s Rotary Clubs together to raise half a million dollars. It’s one step at a time. I want to stay positive that we’re going to get there. We have passed $250,000 raised now. I’m not going to take my eyes off the mark until we get there,” he said. “My next idea… my pledge is when I get the work done with Rotary, I will work on all service clubs. I want to reach out to Lions, Knights of Columbus and so on. I want to be a Grandview Ambassador, raise money for these amazing kids and families and help get a new Grandview built.”