Karissa

Karissa is a friendly and resilient 13-year-old who has been a recipient of Variety funding since she was only four. Since her diagnosis of a facial vascular tumor, she has dealt with chronic pain and complex medical treatments from a young age. The visible condition was also the cause of emotional stress for Karissa as it made her a target for bullying.

Karissa’s recovery required hearing aids and a new CPAP machine which Variety was able to fund thanks to our donors. This year, Variety was able to step in again which meant Karissa had access to mental health counselling to manage the stresses of her physical condition. Now, Karissa has the tools to manage her mental well-being. Counselling empowers Karissa to make meaning of her past experiences and move toward long-term success. Way to go, Karissa!

For more information or to support Variety, visit our financials page, get involved with us or donate today!

Have a story you want to share? We’d love to hear from you, email Shannon today!

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Dear Variety Family,

During the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) global situation, our highest priority is the health, safety and well-being of our Variety donors, families, members, supporters, volunteers and all British Columbians.

Variety BC has been here for more than 50 years ensuring kids with special needs thrive. I would like to assure you that during this uncertain time, we will continue to be here for BC’s kids with special needs.

I also would like to provide you with an update on our response to date and our commitment to you moving forward:

  • In keeping with the BC Centre for Disease Control’s recommendations, we will be postponing all Variety events between March 16th and April 30th including our One Night in the Valley Gala on Saturday, April 4th at the Glass House Estate Winery
  • We have closed the Variety Office as a precautionary measure and are having employees set up to work-from-home. All in-person meetings will be moved to teleconference. We will evaluate working “virtually” on a week-to-week basis while actively monitoring the evolution of this global pandemic and returning to regular operating procedures once health authorities deem it safe for our staff to do so.
  • Due to our office closure, we have postponed the shipping of Robert Bateman’s Woodworkers – Pilated Woodpeckers posters and our Variety water bottles. Anyone looking for tax receipts will receive them via email
  • With the closure of BC’s schools, the need to ensure our kids are supported has never been so great. As such, our Heart of Variety Fund will continue to accept grant applications by e-mail.
    Like all of you, we will monitor the COVID-19 situation and communicate with you on important health and safety measures and decisions regarding events regularly.

We encourage you to stay informed by visiting BC Centre for Disease Control’s website at www.bccdc.ca and the Government of Canada’s website at www.canada.ca/en/publichealth/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19.

We are grateful for your support as we navigate through this uncertain time.

Thank you,


Cally Wesson
CEO – Variety BC