On Sunday, Dec. 18, more than 200 Canucks Autism Network (CAN) members joined together to experience the magic of the Christmas Express at the BC Forest Discovery Centre in North Cowichan.
The special event was sponsored by Parhar Group, who stepped up to ensure that children and youth on the autism spectrum had the opportunity to enjoy the festive voyage in a welcoming and understanding environment.
“We’re so happy to be supporting an event that brings families with children on the autism spectrum together for an inclusive holiday experience,” said Reena Parhar, of Parhar Group. “I have personally witnessed the joy on my son’s face while aboard the train and I wanted other autistic children to experience that same delight.”
To add to the wonder of the evening, the Parhar Group organized an exclusive visit with Santa so CAN families could enjoy the holiday tradition without the challenges of long lineups, louse noises, and big crowds.
The special evening represents just one of CAN’s year-round family events that aim to bring families with shared experiences together to build a community of support. Such events wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of businesses like the Parhar Group.
“We are always so thrilled to be able to work with likeminded organizations like the Parhar Group who are committed to supporting the communities in which they work and live,” said Canucks Autism Network CEO, Britt Andersen. “With one in 32 children and youth being diagnosed with autism in B.C. alone, the need for support is greater than ever.”
Additionally, CAN delivers in-person programs for children, youth, and adults on the autism spectrum in Nanaimo, Victoria, Kamloops, Kelowna and across the Lower Mainland, as well as virtual programs that reach all corners of the province.
For more information, please visit canucksautism.ca.