By Sarah Grishpul
As a member of The War Amps Child Amputee (CHAMP) program, five-year-old Tarah from Keswick, who was born a left leg amputee, received a prosthetic leg through the support and financial aid the organization provides.
“My daughter was born missing her fibula bone,” said Tarah’s mom, Te-Anna Alain-Burke. “So, she doesn’t have her lower bone in her foot on her left side.”
With the prosthetic leg, Tarah is able to enjoy activities like swimming and riding her bike.
“With The War Amps support, Tarah is able to be just like any other child and do whatever she sets her mind to,” she said.
Te-Anna was recently approached by the War Amps to have Tarah featured in an email campaign to local media outlets, after she sent her photo to the organization.
“She actually just started modelling, so that’s her passion right now,” said Te-Anna, who is delighted her daughter was selected. “So when I took those pictures she was just so happy to pose.”
The War Amps is Canadian-based non-profit that operates a free Key Tag Service that has been returning lost keys to their owners for over 75 years.
It also provides financial assistance, peer support, and education to amputees through programs like CHAMP.
Te-Anna explains that one of the benefits of the CHAMP program is that it brings child amputees together.
“When they go to CHAMP, it’s like they’re with their own people. They feel comfortable, they show their lives, so it’s really great for the kids.”
Not only does the program provide child amputees with peer support through seminars and events, but members are also eligible to receive financial assistance for artificial limbs and devices.
The prosthetic leg that Tarah received costs $5,000, however as she grows she’ll require replacements that can cost from $75,000 to $125,000.
“All of CHAMP’s charity and fundraising help us pay for those legs,” Te-Anna said. “So, CHAMP is very vital and important.”
Since the War Amps doesn’t receive government grants, people have the option to donate through the Key Tag and Address Label Services to help fund programs like CHAMP.
To order a key tag or learn more about the War Amps, visit waramps.ca.