Karma Program Quarterly Wrap-Up: Free2BMe

All images provided by Free2BMe. Subjects and/or subjects parents in featured images provided consent for the use of these images for this blog post as well as distribution by the Free2BMe team. 

All images provided by Free2BMe. Subjects and/or subjects parents in featured images provided consent for the use of these images for this blog post as well as distribution by the Free2BMe team. 

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For the past quarter, Yogalife Studios Edmonton proudly supported the Free2BMe program, donating all proceeds from our Karma classes to this wonderful charity, and pillar in the community working with children with disabilities. As we transition into the next season, looking to select the next quarter's charity, we wanted to wrap up this season with a post highlighting what the Free2BMe program is all about, and how your generous donations have helped this program provide individualized programming to children in need. 

Providing Individualized Programming and Supporting Inclusion for Children with Impairment

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The Free2Bme program is a critical arm of the Steadward Centre that provides exercise programming in the form of 1-on-1 programming, as well as group classes for children living with either cognitive or physical impairments. One of the major tenets of the program is fostering inclusion in this population of children by increasing participation in sports and games in an adapted manner to facilitate both physical competence and increase confidence to take part in social programs. 

In the community, children with disabilities are often prone to social isolation from their peers, and experience exclusion from group activities at a higher rate than other individuals of the same age. The Free2Bme program hopes to change that, by first changing children's perception of themselves, allowing them to experience inclusion and a feeling of physical competence when participating in various games and activities. This shifts their vision of themselves from one that is focussed on what their limitations are, to one that is focussed solely on what they can accomplish. 


At Free2Bme the focus is not on disabilities, but on highlighting what your capabilities are. 

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Free2BMe gets kids off the sidelines and into the game through research-based programming tailored to meet the child’s individualized needs.
— Free2BMe

Your donations have helped to provide funding for the various programs that the Free2BMe program runs. This support helps provide the program with the tools it needs to continue its wonderful and important work with children with impairments. As a former student of the program when I was in University, I can attest to the fact that the work that these staff and volunteers do is incredibly important in creating inclusive environments for children, and empowering those kids and their families to see what they're capable of. 


For more information on Free2BMe and the services they provide, and if you'd like to donate, check out their website below. 

Also, the Steadward Centre will be launching their 40th Anniversary Gala on June 1, 2018.

It will be a celebration of the accomplishments of the Steadward Centre in "Leadership, Innovation and Commitment" in their community programming. To purchase tickets, follow the link below: 

Free2BMe - Our Next Karma Program Recipient

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Since 2005, Free2BMe Physical Activity Program for Kids and Teens with Disabilities, the youth component of The Steadward Centre for Personal & Physical Achievement at the University of Alberta has been providing innovative programs for children and youth living with impairment to be active.


The Free2BMe credo is to empower kids and teens experiencing disability to:

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• Be more physically active, fit and healthy

• Feel good about themselves

• Experience success

• Have fun doing “kid” things

• Become vital, self-determined adults

Every year, hundreds of kids and teens ages 4-21 come through the program—with demand increasing every year. Children and youth and their families come to develop their physical confidence and competence in our safe, nonclinical environment. We are the one place in the Greater Edmonton area that any child living with a physical, sensory or developmental impairment can come to learn to ride their bike, throw a ball, understand game play concepts, be introduced to a fitness centre, gain exposure to the world of Para-sport, and be a part of the team for the first time. We do this through four models of service delivery: individual programming, instructional group programs, community and school group outreach and community exercise transition.


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In addition to providing direct service delivery to the community, Free2BMe provides applied learning opportunities for students at the University of Alberta. Last year, over 180 students from physical education and recreation, education, kinesiology and rehabilitation gained valuable hands on experience within Free2Bme programs. Students go on to become teachers, coaches, rehabilitation professionals, physicians and community leaders.


Free2BMe Physical Activity Program for Kids and Teens Experiencing Disability is a one of a kind program providing physical activity, fitness and sport instruction for children and youth living with physical, developmental and sensory impairments.

Founded in 2005, Free2BMe has made an impact in the lives of over 1200 families experiencing disability. Annually, the dynamic program delivered through The Steadward Centre for Personal & Physical Achievement at The University of Alberta serves 450 children and youth ages 4-21 across a variety of 1:1 individualized physical activity and fitness sessions, and instructional group programs.


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If you would like more information regarding the Free2BMe Foundation, please contact: