February 18, 2021
Vancouver, BC (February 18, 2021) – Ledcor and Variety – the Children's Charity in British Columbia, Alberta / Saskatchewan, and Ontario jointly announced today that Ledcor would be donating $1.25 million over five years to provide new innovative glucose monitoring technology to low-income families with young children living with Type 1 diabetes.
"Variety steps in where health care ends by providing medical equipment to families in need," said Cally Wesson, Variety BC's CEO. "Demand for lifesaving medical equipment for kids living with T1D has been increasing, and has been hard to meet, especially because most families cannot afford a continuous glucose monitor."
"The management of Type 1 diabetes in children is particularly challenging. The advent of Continuous Glucose Monitors – or CGMS for short – means that parents no longer have to poke their children six to ten times a day," said Dr. Tom Elliott, Medical Director, BC Diabetes & Clinical Associate Professor, UBC. "A CGM means that parents can sleep well at night, not worrying about their child going low and having a seizure. And when the child is at school, they don't have to worry about the same thing happening in the classroom or on the playground."
Recent technological advances have resulted in the development of less intrusive, continuous glucose monitoring sensors that work with smartphones and smartwatches.
According to statistics from the Canadian Pediatric Society, 33,000 school-age children (5-18 years old) in Canada have Type 1 Diabetes, and there are several thousand under the age of 5.
"Ledcor's community giving focus is on pediatric medical care and helping children who face significant healthcare challenges," said Dave Lede, Chairman and CEO of Ledcor. "The new 'no finger stick' blood sugar monitors can make a huge difference for young children and their parents, but they are very expensive for many families. That is why we have partnered with Variety to provide funding to acquire this life-changing equipment for young children with diabetes."
"We appreciate Ledcor's support in helping Variety launch a new community initiative to enable wellness and independence for children and families who are facing difficult medical challenges," said Jana Hand, CEO, Variety Alberta. "We know of many families in our service areas (BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario) will appreciate receiving this new technology and using it every day."
"The cost of these new sensors can be very significant for many families, usually $3600 a year," said Variety Toronto CEO, Karen Stintz. "We are pleased that Variety will be able to assist families on a limited budget and help manage their children's diabetes more efficiently."
Corporate and employee giving is embedded in Ledcor's company culture and embodied by its Ledcor Cares programs. The spirit comes from a desire to assist others in need and to help move our communities forward by coming together to help organizations that have a place in our hearts. Over the past ten years, Ledcor and its employees have invested over $24 million (CAD) to more than 200 charities across North America, as well as supporting communities through various professional development, sustainability, research, and educational initiatives.