Our History

The history of what is now Easter Seals Alberta has reflected the needs of the time. As new disability related organizations formed and others folded, and government policy and activities changed, our organization maintained a focus on the needs of Albertans with physical disabilities.

The Coordinating Council for Crippled Children (Alberta) was formed about 1948 for the purpose of coordinating the activities of organizations throughout the Province of Alberta in the field of voluntary agencies endeavoring to aid disabled children. The Council had obtained the franchise for the distribution of Easter Seals in this province as its means of fundraising.

In 1951, motivated by the polio epidemic sweeping the continent, Albertans gathered to raise funds for services needed by physically disabled children. That year the first Easter Seal and Easter lily appeared in this province, as did the newly formed volunteer organization named the Northern Alberta Council for Crippled Children. Later this organization’s name was incorporated as the Alberta Council for Crippled Children.

In 1959 the Council’s services expanded to assist physically disabled adults.

In 1975, Canada’s first wheelchair accessible group home for young adults with physical disabilities was opened in Edmonton. March of Dimes McQueen Residence is home to physically disabled adults and promotes the independence of the residents.

At that time the Council brought the March of Dimes organization into Alberta, enabling Easter Seals to focus on the needs of children with physical disabilities, and March of Dimes on programs and services for adults with physical disabilities.

Today, as Easter Seals Alberta, we are able to provide seamless service, no matter the age or disability type.

Volunteer with Easter Seals

Did You Know Part 1

In 1951 Canadian Mothers began marches such as one led by Canada’s first female Cabinet Minister, Ellen Fairclough, MP for Hamilton West. As a result of their efforts, the research of Dr. Jonas Salk was well funded, creating the historic made-in-Canada cure for polio. Today, Easter Seals Alberta funds vital programs and services for adults with disabilities and special needs.