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Variety The Children's Charity Of St. Louis

Rating: 5 stars   27 reviews 3,287

Nonprofit Issues:

Children & Youth, Health, Philanthropy

Address:

2200 Westport Plaza Drive St. Louis MO 63146 USA

Mission:

To help local children with disabilities reach their full potential by providing services every time they need assistance.

Target demographics:

Children under the age of 21 who have physical or mental disabilities in the St. Louis metro area with a household income under $65,000 (or otherwise exhibits extenuating circumstances such as multiple children or exorbitant medical bills).

Direct beneficiaries per year:

Each year, Variety serves more than 14,500 children with physical and/or mental disabilities throughout the St. Louis area.

Geographic areas served:

Metro St. Louis, Missouri (spanning 547 zip codes across 30 counties)

Programs:

Kids on the Go Mobility Program Variety assists more than 1,350 St. Louis-area children by providing them with durable medical equipment – including wheelchairs, augmentative speech devices, leg braces, hearing aids, prostheses, and van lifts – that empowers them to be physically independent. In-House Programs Throughout the year, Variety conducts a number of inclusive programs that allow local children with physical and mental disabilities the same opportunities as their able-bodied friends. Highlights include: • Adventure Camp: Three weeks of fun, challenging activities in the areas of sports, fitness, sensory art and music. • Bikes for Kids: Providing custom therapeutic bikes, as well as traditional bikes, to Variety children. • St. Louis through the Eyes of a Child with a Disability: A field trip for Variety children and their families to experience some of the city’s most treasured attractions together. • Variety Children’s Chorus: Comprised of talented children who receive equipment and/or funding from Variety, as well as children without disabilities. • Variety Children’s Theatre: Bringing together children of all abilities with professional adults in one of the city’s top performance venues to create an unforgettable experience for theater-goers, cast and crew alike. Partner Agencies To further serve children with physical and/or mental disabilities, Variety partners with 80+ specialized agencies throughout the metro area to provide therapy/medical services, education, and counseling. One dynamic element of these partnerships is Variety’s Sunshine Coach Van program, in which Variety provides passenger vans to its partners to transport children across the St. Louis area to doctor appointments, therapy sessions and special outings or activities. Emerson Resource Center Overseen by Variety’s Program Director, the Emerson Resource Center provides valuable information and community connections to resolve the legal, social, therapeutic, education, medical and counseling issues often encountered by families of children with disabilities.

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More Info

314-453-0453
www.varietystl.org

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Reviews for Variety The Children's Charity Of St. Louis

Rating: 5 stars  

Summer Camp, paying for equipment and therapy co-pays, the many family outings offered and caring staff are just a few of the reasons Variety of St. Louis is a great organization. Thank you Variety!!

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I work at Sherwood Forest, a nonprofit, year-round youth development organization based in St. Louis. We have received several Sunshine Coaches (large 12-passenger vans) from Variety over the last 15 years. Our programs are anchored in a month-long residential summer camp experience, and we use these vehicles to transport our kids to and from our camp site in Lesterville, Missouri. Many of the kids we serve do not have access to reliable transportation, and Sunshine Coach Vans ensure that everyone is able to fully participate in our programs. We are so grateful to be able to partner with Variety The Children's Charity Of St. Louis to improve the lives of children in our community!

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I am proud to be the Music Director for both the Variety Club Children's Theater and the Variety Club Children's Chorus. I have been involved with Variety as a professional musician for almost 20 years. What an organization. What dedicated, loving, supportive and caring workers and volunteers! These young people and their parents are all my heroes. I have seen Variety help families in need, provide support, programs, smiles, confidence, and "I can do it-ness," All of the money raised for Variety of St. Louis stays here in St. Louis.

Thank you for not just providing for special needs youth and their families, but also allowing ME the chance to see angels at work.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2015

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I have a 5 year old who has been helped immensely by the variety club! He has received medical equipment and has been to 3 of the amazing camps they have. He loves it. They are very good at being able to deal with a "variety" of kids with all different abilities. They are always very understanding and flexible to help fill our needs and to make accommodations. It has been such an enormous blessing in our lives and we are so very thankful!

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I am 25 years old, and I have daughter who just turned 5 years old. In 2013 myself, my fiance , and my daughter were hit head on by a driver who was allegedly under the influence. This caused my daughter to have a traumatic brain injury and be diagnosed with ataxia. Since the accident recovery, she has become so determined to get back to where she was before the accident. She has to wear leg braces to help her balance and walk properly. When she out grew the ones the insurance paid for... the insurance would not cover for a new pair due to the short time she out grew the first ones. Unfortunately, I had no money to provide to out pocket for my daughter to walk properly... I searched everywhere trying to find a solution so that she could get the braces that were a necessity for her. I feel so stuck because everyone wanted to help but had no resources to. My daughters Physical therapist heard great things about variety and referred me to them. I contacted them and within a short time (about 2-3 weeks) my daughter had the doctors appointment to get the braces fitted and paid for. Variety provided all costs for her braces. No words could describe how appreciative and thankful that variety could help my daughter! I hope anybody out there struggling to find help like my family was, could be referred to by variety. They truly are amazing!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2015

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My 10 year old daughter (Madi) has cerebral palsy (she was born 12 weeks early). Variety has helped ensure she can get the equipment she needs (like a walker & stander) plus they help cover some of her weekly physical therapy co-pays. Madi has also participated in their amazing plays & their camp which make Madi feel more like a regular kid. I don't know what we'd do without Variety.
Traci

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

my son has gotten help from them since he was a baby, he is 12 years old and they still help us when our Insurance dont pay this organization is an awesome one the people just love these kids its like ... WOW!!! unbelievable.. amazing people! im in tears .. thank you so much guys! we couldn't do this with out your help! God Bless you for helping all these kid's!!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none what so ever!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2015

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

As parents to two children with special needs, we are determined to provide our children with the best that life has to offer, despite their disabilities. When the needs of our children became financially challenging, we reached out to Variety. Our youngest needed a walker and orthotics were required for both children and were provided immediately by Variety. Our children desperately wanted bikes, but were unable to ride the traditional ones. Variety was able to provide both of our children with therapeutic bikes, custom-fitted to their unique abilities.

Our children have also attended Variety Adventure Camp and always have the time of their lives. With their intense therapies and doctor appointments consuming most of their days, it is wonderful that Variety can help our children experience a more typical childhood summer. We thank God that Variety is able and willing to help us in so many ways.

We are unsure what the future entails and get overwhelmed when thinking about it, but we take great comfort in knowing that Variety will be there when we need them.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try and make Variety known to everyone out there. They are an amazing organization changing the lives of children by simply saying they CAN!!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I've been an actor in two of Variety's productions. It is one of the most rewarding experiences I could ask for. It is wonderful to see children of all abilities get to participate and grow as individuals and to work together towards a goal. It's a fun experience for all and kids who participate are being taught valuable life lessons that they're not even aware of. Children who are not disabled are taught compassion and perhaps working with the Variety kids might make them want to pursue a career in special education or the medical or social work. The Variety kids get to be kids; treated like anyone else with the same expectations to do their very best. It is an excellent rehearsal environment. The Variety staff and the artistic staff work very hard to make sure that everyone is treated with respect and kindness while maintaining the necessary focus to mount their amazing productions. The staff also has high expectation of everyone in rehearsal and the kids always rise to the occasion and meet the challenge. Variety has been a valuable organization in the St. Louis community for decades and I know with the dedication of the staff and help from the community will continue to be a wonderful asset.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I had a great opportunity to be a wrangler for Peter Pan and it was one of the best experiences I had! I loved working with the kids and getting to see them grow as actors for the show. I was able to see the show on Sunday and it was amazing! I love seeing the Variety kids being treated as people not as people with a disability. This experience has reassured me to become a special ed teacher. I love everything Variety does!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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