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 intellectual 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 7,925 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 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.
• 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.
To further serve children with physical and/or mental disabilities, Variety partners with 60+ specialized agencies throughout the metro area to provide therapy/medical services, education, and counseling.
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.
I am a volunteer with the Variety Children's Theatre and I have seen Variety kids gain skills and confidence in their abilities. By participating on backstage or onstage teams, they are learning skills which can transfer to potential careers, and learning how to work together as a team to realize goals.
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!
I have worked with Variety, the Children's Charity of St. Louis for over 3 years now and I grow more fond of them each year. I mainly help with their Adventure Camp but also volunteer for other events throughout the year. I love playing and having fun with the kids and seeing their faces light up. Variety means everything to a lot of these kids and their families and I completely understand why.