Local family benefits from children’s charity

By on February 9, 2018
Olivia, Christiane and Amery Schultz. (Cole Wagner/Herald).

 

For the 52nd year in a row, the Variety children’s charity will take over the airwaves on Feb. 11, in an effort to raise money on behalf of sick kids across the province.

The benefits of the program are felt in every corner of British Columbia, and nobody knows this more than the Schultz family in Merritt, who have been the beneficiary of Variety programs for years.

Most recently, the cost of a new, specialized wheelchair for four-year-old Olivia Schultz was covered by Variety, while the charity also takes care of the cost of accommodations whenever the family has to visit BC Children’s Hospital.

“Before we knew about programs like these, we would incur about $500 just to go down there for one day and come back with our kids,“ said Amery Schultz. “It’s piece of mind. We’re not rich by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s an added expense we don’t have to worry about.“

The family with four children has dealt with more than their fair share of obstacles.

“Daniel, he’s six, was in the hospital for open heart surgery when he was born. He benefited from Variety, they bought a breast pump for him,” said Amery.

And despite the rough go of things, the family still enjoys days of respite — again thanks to Variety programs like Boat for Hope, where kids and their families are invited for a day out on the water, complete with games, prizes and pirate treasure.

The Schultz family is just one small example of the charity’s impact locally, added Amery.

“There’s agencies like Merritt Youth and Families that have the Variety bus — there is money that comes from that program into this community on so many different levels,” said Schultz. “There is between 80 and 100 families in this community that go down to Children’s Hospital every year, so I would think that most of them are benefiting in some way or form.”

The Show of Hearts telethon is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 11, and will be broadcast on Global BC and via livestream on globalnews.ca. Last year, the telethon raised $5,087,000 in support of the children’s charity.

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