Tara is my vibrant 18 year old, who has just started studying biochemistry at the University of Waterloo. She was born with a paralyzed left hand as a result of delivery trauma and at age one, we brought her to Canada to undergo a surgery to restore mobility to her hand. We immigrated to Canada in 2002. In 2007 at age nine, fate dealt her a tragic blow in the form of Flesh eating disease (Necrotizing fasciitis). Unfortunately, the disease was diagnosed very late resulting in her losing her left leg with a high above knee amputation. Initial prognosis indicated she would not walk unassisted but Tara’s determination and the encouragement from family and friends and support from the Holland Bloorview Rehab Centre saw Tara walking in a few short months. The nature of the amputation resulted in an uncomfortable fit of the artificial limb which meant frequent adjustments and changes. The Prosthetist has worked zealously with Tara trialing various sockets and means of suspension and each time they thought they were finding a solution only to fail a few months later.
This frequent discomfort and difficulties has not quelled Tara’s competitive spirit. In fact it has only strengthened her resolve to overcome her struggles to meet the world on even terms. Tara has grown to become a competitive swimmer, she ski’s in the winter and goes camping & canoeing in the summer, like every teenager with a zest for life. Despite the immobility of the left hand she has learned to play the piano and guitar, and has even knitted and crocheted hats and scarves to fund her own summer camp.
Her achievements include.
- Canadian record holder in the 200 m butterfly – Para – S6 class
- Para PanAm games 2015 tryouts and Paralympic 2016 tryouts for swimming.
- Canada Cord (highest award in Girl Guides).
- Duke of Ed Award – Gold
- Mayor’s award for her contribution to the War Amps of Canada
- Successfully completed the IB diploma and was in Deca (business club), IB Ensemble and Model UN, besides being a competitive swimmer and swimming five to seven times a week for two to three hours each session.
In the last year and a half, she has been having a string of difficulties with her prosthetic limb. The socket of the limb does not fit comfortably because the stump is too short and of irregular shape. This has resulted in calluses and sores on the stump that sometimes bleed. The fit of the prosthetic limb has other complications and recently she has had a few falls, confining her to a wheel chair and often to her room on campus. It has impacted her self-esteem, confidence and determination.
Last summer Tara visited Australia to consult with a surgeon, Dr. Munjed Al Muderis. He is an orthopedic surgeon specialising in hip, knee, and trauma, and osseointegration surgery. Osseointegration is a surgery where a rod is implanted into the bone and the prosthetic is fitted on to the rod very similar to a dental implant. During the consultation we also discovered Tara’s leg bone (femur) was only eight cm which may not provide a stable long term platform for osseointegration. Dr. Al Muderis recommended a bone lengthening procedure followed by the osseointegration. This procedure will increase her bone length allowing for the second procedure.
These surgeries are not offered in Canada. We had put in an application to the Canadian Government for funding but our application was declined because they consider the bone lengthening surgery experimental (only eight have been done in the world).
The cost of the Surgeries are
Bone lengthening with the Precice nail -$AU 73,000
Osseointegration – $AU 117,000
We have decided to go ahead with the bone lengthening surgery, as we are confident that this would change her life and give Tara a chance to live independently as an adult. The bone lengthening surgery has been fixed for the 19th of January, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. The 90 – day bone lengthening process starts in Australia and will be continued in Canada. After the bone lengthening process, there will be a six month to a year consolidation time for the lengthened bone to harden before proceeding with the osseointegration surgery.
We appeal to your generosity and would greatly appreciate any financial assistance to help fund these surgeries. No amount is too small. If the surgeries are successful and we have full faith they will be, Tara will once more strive to be a normal adult with a dignified life and her smile will light up all our lives knowing it would not have been possible without your help.
To showcase what Tara has achieved here are websites that Tara has appeared on:
TVO Kids – Marks Moments –
Mississauga News Article –
CHCH News Burlington – War Amps Champs Seminar –
Duke of Ed video-Not all learning happens in the classroom-
Here are some details of the surgical procedures which will perhaps explain our choice to proceed with this innovative and pioneering technique.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_X8PFJGrtA – bone lengthening with the Precice nail.
When Daniel Sequeira isn’t playing guitar at his local hospital’s pediatric oncology ward to put a smile on the faces of sick kids, he’s raising money to ensure that his fellow students don’t go hungry. And he’s only just turned 18. In 2012 Daniel and his older brother, Nick set up a registered charity called Two Kids for Change. .. As he graduates high school and heads to Western University in London, Ont., this fall, he has gained some pretty profound perspective. “I’ve learned to appreciate life and everything we have. You see a lot of people who don’t have as much as you, but they still value every moment, and it makes you want to do the same.” … For further details click here
Daniel Sequeira is the son of Dr. Errol Sequeira and Sharon Sequeira of Mississauga; Grandson of Rudy and Maureen Fernandes and Manny and Ann Sequeira and the Great Grandson of Mrs. Amy Moniz of Saligao, Goa.
The Government of Goa, Department of NRI Affairs presents compliments and seeks support and assistance of the Indian Missions and the Goan Overseas Associations to promote the “Know Goa Programme (KGP)” formulated for the benefit of Goan Diaspora Youth who are not Indian Nationals but whose parents and/or grandparents are of Indian origin, and have had no opportunity to discover their roots in India in general and Goa in particular.
The 9th Know Goa Programme 2016 is scheduled to be held from November 27 to December 11, 2016. It is intended for students and young professionals in the age group of 18 to 28 years who have distinguished themselves in various fields and who have shown an abiding interest in Goa and in India. The participants will get an opportunity to visit premier educational, cultural, historical and industrial places of interest, besides interacting with local youth and elected representatives at the grass root level, and meet State and Central Government dignitaries.
During their stay in Goa from 27th November to 07th December 2016, they will also get an opportunity to call on the Hon’ble Governor of Goa, the Chief Minister, the Dy. Chief Minister, Speaker of the Goa Legislative Assembly and the Commissioner for NRI Affairs. The participants will be escorted to Delhi on 07th December 2016. The programme in Delhi will be chalked out in consultation with the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs and will conclude with visit to World Heritage Monuments at Agra on 10th December 2016 before the participants depart to their respective countries on 10th December 2016 (late night)/11th December 2016.
The Government of Goa will bear 90% of the total cost of the air ticket at lowest economy excursion fare from the home country of the participant to India and back as well as cost of all local travel and accommodation with meals. The terms and conditions and the eligibility criteria is attached.
May we request your Mission to kindly give this programme wide publicity among the Goan Diaspora in your country, including the local Goan Associations, and solicit applications of interested youth latest by August 15th 2016. The applications with suitable recommendations may kindly be forwarded to this office by August 31th, 2016.
Director, NRI Affairs
Terms & Conditions and Eligibility Criteria
- Goan Diaspora Youth in the age group of 18 – 28 years who are not Indian nationals and whose parents and/or grandparents are of Indian/Goan origin, have had no opportunity to discover their roots, have abiding interest in India in general and Goa in particular, and who have distinguished themselves in various fields, are eligible to apply in the application form attached.
- Those who have already participated in the Know India Programme organized by Government of India, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs or the Know Goa Programme organized by Government of Goa, Department of NRI Affairs from 2008 till 2015, will not be considered for the 9th Know Goa Programme.
- The Government of Goa will re-imburse to the participants on reaching Goa in rupee equivalent in cash 90% of the total cost of the air ticket at lowest economy excursion fare from the destination in the country of domicile to Goa, and return from Delhi back to the destination.
- The Government of Goa will purchase one way economy class air ticket of the participants from Goa to Delhi.
- While in Goa, the participants will be accommodated at Miramar Residency in Deluxe A.C. Rooms on twin sharing basis at government cost. This is a prime property of Goa Tourism Development Corporation located at the famous Miramar Beach, only 04 kms away from Panaji, the capital city of Goa. The participants will be provided breakfast, lunches and dinners at government cost.
- While in Delhi, the participants will be accommodated at Goa Niwas, Chanyakpuri in A.C. rooms on twin-sharing basis and provided breakfast, lunches and dinners at government cost. Arrangements for the visit of the participants to places of interest in Delhi and Agra will be made in consultation with the Government of India, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, New Delhi.
- Final departure of the participants to their respective destinations will be from Delhi.
?#?ALBERTAFIRES?, ?#?FORTMCMURRAY?: Canadians are digging deep to help the communities devastated by the fires in Alberta.
A proud moment for the GTA based Goan Canadian Community – Once again, we have proven that in times of need, we can come together to support a great cause.
The efforts have been inspirational and truly represents who we are and the fundamental values we share as Goan Canadians.
As a result of our collective efforts, in our own small and special way , we were able to raise a total of $8,000 to assist the impacted families of Fort McMurray.
The Cheque was provided to the Canadian Red Cross and it was confirmed that the government will be matching the donation to $16,000.
Thanks to all the donors, individuals who attended the fundraiser and all the performers (Grenville Pinto, Memory Lane, Victor Solo & Live, Rythm Sizzlers, DJ Conrad,
Tony Benson (Photography) and Goa Amigos who helped contribute towards the success of the cause !!
A special acknowledgement to our alliance partners – The Canadian Red Cross, The Boyz @ Heart, The Goa Amigos & 55 PGA.
We Stand together & Stronger as ONE UNIFIED COMMUNITY !! THANK YOU !!
Meagan Delima, granddaughter of Steve and Elma Alvares, Sydney and Angela deLima, is a 22 year old jazz/soul artist from Toronto, Canada. A fan of artists such as Amy Winehouse, Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder, Meagan de Lima’s soul-tinged songs based on her memories of struggle, strength and compassion are set to resonate with all who hear them.
Her accomplishments thus far would be gaining the largest crowd at the Downtown Oakville Jazz Festival opening for Juno and Gemini winner, Holly Cole. In 2013, winning Canada’s largest female R&B singing competition, Honey Jams, and having the opportunity to fly to Barbados to represent Canadian music just like Nelly Furtado and Jully Black had done in the past. In 2015, having the honour of opening for Emilie-Claire Barlow at the Oakville Performing Arts Centre and having her original piece, ‘Like You Do,’ produced by legendary producer, Bob Ezrin at Humber Studios. With a goal for an international tour with her 7-piece band along with becoming signed with an international label, there is no stopping her.
~ “IT pays to be part of the Growing Slogan – “Proud to be GOAN” ~