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TR in the Media

TRO welcomes media inquiries about issues related to Therapeutic Recreation, our members and the people to whom we offer service. For media inquiries, please contact Rozalyn Werner-Arcé, Executive Director at ed@trontario.org or call 289-626-8761 x. 1


The Easter Bunny arrived at the Strathcona Long Term Care Home, thanks to staff

APRIL 15, 2021 – With Ontario under a province-wide shutdown order over the Easter long weekend due to the COVID-19 pandemic, staff at Strathcona Long Term Care Home in Mount Forest arranged for some seasonal fun for residents, including a visit from the Easter Bunny on April 11. 


LTC residents social and emotional needs being ignored, TRO says

MARCH 30, 2021 – Therapeutic Recreation (TR) specialists, who provide recreational activities for LTC residents, say they have been left out of the provincial government’s long-term care staffing plan. And Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO), the association representing them, says this will have a negative impact on the social and emotional well-being of LTC residents.

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Let’s dance: Burnbrae music program gets residents moving

MARCH 25, 2021 – Since Burnbrae Gardens started a multifaceted music program six months ago, residents of the Campbellford, Ont. long-term care home have been benefiting from the joys music brings as well as from more exercise, increased happiness and lots of reminiscing. The Music Appreciation program is the brainchild of life enrichment aide Shawna Booth, who started the program in September to provide residents with activities they enjoy while adhering to safety protocols in effect due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


More funding needed for recreation therapy in LTC homes: Therapeutic Recreation Ontario

MARCH 6, 2021 – Recreation therapy is much more than bingo, bowling and birthdays for residents in long-term care homes, and it’s time the provincial government gives that profession the recognition - and funding - it deserves. That’s the message from Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO), an association representing more than 1,800 practitioners, educators, and students involved in recreation therapy. 


Dearth of LTC recreational therapists unhealthy: TRO

MARCH 4, 2021 –Ontario’s recreational therapists urge the province to get moving to beef up their rosters in long-term care facilities. A year into the pandemic, many long-term care residents are living without the “necessary” therapeutic recreation programs they need to sustain sound quality of life, a problem primarily sparked by staffing shortages, says Sault Ste. Marie recreational therapist Heidi Slotegraaf.

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Colouring book fundraiser lands books in all 33 long-term-care homes in Niagara

JUNE 25, 2020 – Christine Wilkinson and her daughters, Emma and Kate, launched a fundraising campaign to purchase 10 colouring books and markers for every long-term- care home in the Niagara Region. And on June 24 they reached that goal, having delivered colouring books to all 33 long-term-care homes in the region. Wilkinson, who is the co-ordinator of Niagara College’s Recreation Therapy program, had been in contact with graduates and was hearing from many of them about the challenges they, and the residents, were facing once group programs were discontinued due to COVID-19.


Think COVID-19 can stop this Toronto therapy dog? Think again

JUNE 15, 2020 – A global pandemic is not enough to keep Coogee the Australian labradoodle away from the senior residents she loves to visit at Sunnybrook hospital's Veterans Centre. Recreation therapist Jennifer Ashby was keen to keep the therapy dog visits going, so she coordinated with Coogee’s owner, found an iPad and began holding virtual visits with Coogee to provide a ray of sunshine for the residents.  


‘It’s nice to just have a friend’

JUNE 12, 2020 – Kirby Beadle (left) and Kate MacLeod, both recreation therapists with Alzheimer Society of Sault Ste. Marie and Algoma District, set out during last week’s warm weather to deliver ice cream sandwiches, Popsicles and, perhaps most importantly, bright smiles to their clients, while physically distancing. Although their local office is still closed to the public, services have continued. The recreation therapists have been reaching out over the phone and on the computer providing support and a familiar voice. Activation kits have been provided to clients so that they can continue to activate at home.

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LETTER: Local long-term care worker begs province to 'do better'

JUNE 2, 2020 – "I've been speaking up and crying for help for years in an attempt to help our seniors, to do better for the people that built the world I live in," says Ashley Guay, a Recreation Therapist at Bradford Valley Care Community, a long-term care home in Bradford.


Therapeutic Recreation students help during COVID-19 through virtual placements

MAY 25, 2020 – Check out Patricia Robson’s interview on CBC Radio! When COVID-19 cancelled hands-on placements for students training to be recreational therapists at Algonquin College, the school decided to start up a virtual agency and offer dozens of people free treatment online. How that pilot project is set to work.

PLUS: Read the article from Algonquin College


Wellness Wednesday tips

MAY 20, 2020 – Congratulations to Sara Richardson-Brown, Recreation Therapist at Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, who spoke with Team 1200 radio in Ottawa last week. Sara explained the five domains of TR and they can be used to help take care of ourselves during the pandemic. Sara’s team has also put together a great infographic on self-care that also references the five domains. You can download it from our COVID-19 resources page. 

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Fun and recreation are so important for Durham seniors — even when a home has an outbreak

APRIL 30, 2020 – On a normal day, Hillsdale Terraces is a bustling place with no shortage of activities for its 200 residents. Now, containing the outbreak and keeping families in the loop on how their loved ones are doing is the new priority. But that doesn’t mean that fun and recreation are on pause. “Therapeutic recreation is more important than ever,” says Tanis Head, coordinator of recreation and therapy. 


ParaSport Magazine features a TR specialist

The newest issue of ParaSport Magazine features a great interview with Kristen English, TR specialist at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital (see page 45). Thank you ParaSport Magazine for showcasing how Therapeutic Recreation benefits youth with disabilities!


TR prof and her daughters spread positivity at Niagara’s LTC homes

APRIL 9, 2020 –  While physical distancing measures, including a no visitor policy, are in place to protect those living in Niagara’s long-term care homes from COVID-19, Christine Wilkinson, coordinator of NC’s Recreation Therapy program, rallied the support of kids, fellow faculty, community members and alumni to spread positivity to residents and staff at this difficult time.

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'You get to see people again:' HHS combating COVID-19 loneliness with virtual visits

MARCH 28, 2020 – St. Peter’s Hospital in Hamilton was forced to close its doors to visitors on March 20 in order to protect patients. That means people who have been volunteering at the hospital can no longer see residents they’ve formed a connection with. Those relationships — somewhere between a staff and family member — mean a lot, according to Lyndsey Charles, a recreation therapist in the palliative care unit. So staff started looking for ways to bring the volunteers back to help fight off isolation and loneliness.


Niagara College takes steps toward student wellness

JANUARY 24, 2020 – Sometimes a quick walk can provide a much-needed wellness boost to post-secondary students balancing the stresses of work, school and daily life. That’s why Kristen Oudman, a first-year Recreational Therapy student, did her best to round up other students to participate in the college’s weekly Mood Walk at Niagara College’s Welland campus.


Being part of the Scouting family

JANUARY 24, 2020 – Ashley Guay came back to Bradford in August, after completing her studies in therapeutic recreation at Brock University. She credits her volunteer work with inspiring her career choice. Guay has always enjoyed physical activity, recreation, and leadership – skills that were honed and developed through her life-long engagement in scouting.

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Tulip may be tiny, but this therapy horse brings big joy to kids in Durham

DECEMBER 5, 2019 – You can always tell when Tulip is in the building at the Grandview Children's Centre. The three-year-old miniature horse stands two feet tall, smaller than average for her breed. Staff at Grandview say research backs up the many benefits of therapy animals — some studies say they even have the potential to decrease pain.


They Got The Bus!

DECEMBER 5, 2019 – Just in time for Christmas! Some good news for the residents of The Ontario Finnish Resthome Association. After three years of fundraising, they will now have access to a brand new wheelchair accessible bus, 


Established Brazilian singer sets off towards a new career path in Sarnia

NOVEMBER 23, 2019 – You might say that Rio de Janeiro is worlds away from Sarnia, Ontario. But that's exactly the journey that Fernanda Cunha made when she decided to move from the sunny, sprawling former Brazilian capital to the small, snowy border city. Cunha is a well-established singer in her native country, with eight albums to her credit. But this fall, the 49-year-old moved to Sarnia to attend Lambton College’s Recreation Therapy program.

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‘Is this the right direction?’ A Toronto program helps youth with disabilities find their own path 

AUGUST 30, 2019 – Caleb Jones had rarely taken the subway before starting the Independence Program a week earlier, run by Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital for youth with disabilities. The program teaches young adults with physical and cognitive disabilities how to live independently.


A home away from home for children with medical complexities

AUGUST 19, 2019 – Is there anything better than hearing laughter from children simply having fun? Located in Milton, summer camp at The Darling Home for Kids is a place of comfort and joy for children with complex medical needs. 


Creating joy for dying children

JULY 15, 2019 – Katt Brooks says play helps kids in palliative care enjoy their last days — and come to terms with death.



Therapeutic recreation team at Mount Hope is ‘going places’

MAY 30, 2019 – St. Joseph’s Health Care London shared the good news of their Therapeutic Recreation winning the 2019 TRO Organization Award on their website. For more information about this year's TRO Awards, please click here



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