By ALEX FRAZER-HARRISON
Mirror News Editor
When the 1998 Children's Miracle Network Telethon goes on this air this weekend, you may ask yourself: Why should I make a donation?
One answer can be found in the person of nine-year-old Trevor Lindsay.
For Trevor, Calgary's Alberta Children's Hospital has been almost a second home for much of his life. And he and his family have had to deal with circumstances that young boys shouldn't have to face.
Born with a mysterious mass in his heart that causes arrhythmia, Trevor also has had to deal with a congenital birth defect causing the bones in his lower leg to curve as he grows. The condition ultimately led to the amputation of his right foot a year ago.
Trevor's mom, Yvonne, credits the staff at ACH for making a very difficult time easier to deal with, thanks to the availability of counsellors, psychologists and medical professionals.
"When you first go through something like this you think you can deal with it - but you find you have so many questions you don't know where to start," she said.
"Then it seemed out of nowhere all these people came and said we'll arrange for you to speak with other parents - before you know it you have 10 options ... you're relieved to know there's people to talk to."
Today, Trevor's arhythmia is controlled with medication, and despite the presence of a prosthetic foot, added father Dwight Lindsay, Trevor "is more active now than before the surgery."
Trevor was recently nominated to the IOF Foresters Champions Across Canada program. He will be one of nine Canadian children representing patients from hospitals supported by the Children's Miracle Network, during the 21-hour CMN Telethon May 30 and 31.
For Trevor, this means a trip to Ottawa later this week to meet the Governor General in Ottawa, followed by his first-ever trip to Walt Disney World, to attend and appear on the special broadcast, hosted by Merlin Olsen, Mary Lou Retton and others.
But to ACH and children's hospitals across North America, the Champions program and the telethon are a chance to raise vital funding for programs, equipment and services.
"One-hundred per cent of all the telethon funds raised will go to the children in the hospital," said ACH special events co-ordinator Jennifer Semple.
ACH takes care of 110,000 patients each year. And their needs can be expensive. For example, according to ACH information, a child-sized wheelchair can cost nearly three times as much as an adult chair.
But the efforts and money are worth it to see kids like Trevor Lindsay up and about, said ACH Foundation spokesman Rick Tabaracci of the Calgary Flames.
"It's nice to see a little guy like Trevor running around shooting pucks at me - his quality of life has improved tremendously," he said.
The telethon, dubbed CMN Champions, begins at 7 p.m. May 30 on Calgary 7.
special thanks to Alex Frazer-Harrison for sending this article over to me
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