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Newsroom
12/10/2017
CHEO – OCTC celebrates new Smilezone at its school for children with special needs

Oct. 12, 2017— OTTAWA — The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario – Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre (CHEO – OCTC) celebrated the grand opening today of its newly renovated educational and learning areas in the OCTC School, which serves medically complex and technologically dependent student in kindergarten through Grade 3.

Generously donated by the Smilezone Foundation and supported by the Ottawa 67’s, these bright, fun activity zones include murals, interactive exploration walls and creative learning spaces are meant to help improve the everyday the learning and therapeutic experience for the children of the OCTC School.

"Smilezone is overjoyed to be back in Ottawa after transforming Zones at the treatment centre back in 2015,” said Scott Bachly, Co-chair and Co-founder of the Smilezone Foundation. “This special transformation would not be possible without the support from Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre School, CHEO – OCTC and the Ottawa 67s. We are thrilled that the students came back to school in a bright, inviting space and will enjoy their Zones for years to come."

Alongside the interactive and creative spaces are murals featuring the Ottawa 67’s and mounted hockey sweaters from the club.

“I think it’s so important that school is a happy place,” said Jeff Hunt, Governor of the Ottawa 67’s Hockey Club. “To provide a space that encourages smiles, fun and learning is a great achievement and we at the 67’s are proud to support the CHEO – OCTC Smilezone.”

The Smilezone Foundation is a registered charity committed to “putting smiles on children’s faces.” Founded in 2012 by Adam Graves, Toronto-born former professional hockey player and two-time Stanley Cup winner, and Scott Bachly, CEO of Bachly Construction, the Oakville organization assists kids and their families who are facing difficult times and health challenges.

“I salute the incredible generosity of Smilezone and its founders, as well as our own Ottawa 67’s,” said Alex Munter, President and CEO of CHEO – OCTC. “This gift is making lives better for some of our most vulnerable children in a very real and fun way that enhances their school experiences.”

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About Smilezone Foundation

Smilezone’s mission is to create, build and transform areas (“Zones”) in hospitals, private treatment and development centres, and children’s clinics, in order to improve the lives of children facing illness, disabilities, and physical and emotional obstacles—ultimately putting a smile on their faces. Visit smilezone.com for more information.

About CHEO – OCTC

The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario – Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre (CHEO –OCTC) is the leading provider of specialized pediatric health services in Canada's capital. CHEO’s programs help over 500,000 children and youth each year in Eastern Ontario, Western Quebec, Nunavut and parts of Northern Ontario. As a world-class research centre and teaching hospital, for over 40 years CHEO has changed young lives in our community, while our innovations change young lives around the world. For more than 65 years, OCTC has been providing specialized care for children and youth with disabilities, including cerebral palsy, complex needs associated with congenital conditions, developmental delay, autism spectrum disorders and brain injury. The two previously separate organizations recently joined forces to become one organization, stronger together for kids and families.

Media Contacts

Jackie Hames
Communications Coordinator, Smilezone Foundation
o. 905-951-2978 x313
jhames@smilezone.com

Paddy Moore,
Media Relations, CHEO – OCTC
m. 613-769-5553
pmoore@cheo.on.ca

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