Meet Kalea Davies and Tyler Preece
2014 Provincial Easter Seals Ambassadors who will spend the year representing Easter Seals and raising awareness for kids with physical disabilities across the province.
Bubbly, energetic and full of giggles, 11-year-old Kalea Davies has been selected to be an Easter Seals Provincial Ambassador for 2014. Along with her male counterpart, Tyler Preece, Kalea will spend the year traveling throughout the province to promote the abilities and achievements of kids with physical disabilities by speaking at fundraising and community events.
Kalea lives with her parents, younger sister Kiara and their pet cats in Etobicoke. Born with cerebral palsy, Kalea has mobility issues which require her to use a walker, leg braces and a wheelchair for long distances. In addition, she has weakness in one of her arms and needs assistance with everyday tasks like putting her hair in a ponytail and doing up buttons. “Other than that, there’s really not much I can’t do,” she says.
Currently a straight “A” student in grade 6, Kalea is engaged in a multitude of activities: learning French, writing fairy tales, learning how to play piano and reading books like Harry Potter and Ann of Green Gables. Her extracurricular interests include skiing, horseback riding, swimming, making and trading Rainbow Loom bracelets with her friends and listening to the latest pop music hits from the likes of Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift.
In her role as Ambassador, she would like to raise awareness about Easter Seals and its camps. A repeat camper, Kalea has been to Easter Seals Camp Merrywood for the Discovery program as well as with her family to Family Camp. Her family has also received funding for the Recreational Choices Funding Program, allowing her to attend a local day camp.
Kalea is looking forward to the challenge of being the 2014 Provincial Easter Seals Ambassador and being the voice for those who cannot speak for themselves. Throughout her year, she hopes to spread an important message about kids with physical disabilities: “We’re just the same as everyone on the inside; maybe not on the outside, but on the inside we are.”
Tyler Preece is 19, ready to graduate high school and determined to accomplish goals that include winning awards for dressage, learning Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata on the piano and attending university. On top of that, Tyler has been selected to be an Easter Seals Provincial Ambassador for 2014, a role which asks him to represent the 20,000 children and youth with physical disabilities across Ontario. Born with hydrocephalus and Goldenhar’s Syndrome, a condition that has resulted in no thumbs, hearing loss and no vision in his right eye, Tyler does not let his disability stop him. “I can do what everyone else can. It might just take me a little longer or I may have to do it a little differently.”
Born and raised in Cookstown, Tyler is the youngest of three children. Currently a grade 12 student, Tyler enjoys accounting and his writer’s craft course, where he can focus on his love of writing horror stories. He plans to pursue post-secondary education in accounting or medical technology but first, he will take a year off to complete his duties as Ambassador and volunteer at his local elementary school reading to younger children. His interests also include horseback riding, piano lessons and reading.
During the summers, he enjoys challenging himself at Easter Seals Camp Merrywood’s overnight out-tripping program and has also attended Easter Seals Camp Woodeden, where he enjoyed the high ropes course, giant swing and pottery. He is passionate about Easter Seals camps and its benefits: “Easter Seals helps kids go to camp which teaches them independence and how to adapt to new situations.”
Meeting new people, public speaking opportunities and trying great food at events are among some of things Tyler is looking forward to during his year as one of two Easter Seals Provincial Ambassadors. He wants to “help people understand that kids with physical disabilities are the same as other kids and should have the same opportunities to grow as individuals,” and hopes to bring awareness about kids with physical disabilities, namely, that “kids with physical disabilities can do anything if you just give them a chance.”