Brody Brown is an 8-year-old goalie for the Peterborough Petes Novice AAA with a heart of gold.
See, Brody wanted to help out the Electric City Maroon & White, a special needs hockey team in town. On Saturday (November 11th) during an Electric City practice at Norwood Arena near Peterborough, he came and mentored 11-year-old goalie Jacob Craft who is learning the position.
This is Brody (at left) helping Jacob...
Coach Chris J-Boy Williams says Brody is a wonderful kind, young man that is already making a difference by working with special needs players.
"Brody's mom originally reached out to me a couple of months ago to let me know he has asked anyone coming to his birthday that in lieu of presents, to give cash which he wanted to donate to our team," Coach Williams tells PTBOCanada. "He came out to one of our practices recently and donated $200 which was an extremely kind thing to do. We have a brand new Junior goalie, Jacob, and I asked him if he would like to come out on the ice and work with Jacob which he did today. Super nice little guy that just wants to help out."
Brody (at left) giving advice to Jacob about goaltending
Brody tells PTBOCanada of his gesture: “I love playing hockey and want to help others play too."
Here is Brody pictured with Coach Williams, delivering the donation to the team...
Brody's gesture of time and money had an impact that Coach Williams, Jacob and the rest of the team won't forget.
"This is so much more than hockey," Coach Williams tells PTBOCanada. "Children and adults with special needs are often left feeling isolated with few friends and having Brody on the ice, welcoming Jacob to the Electric City family, is important to my players."
Brody, Jacob and Coach Williams
Coach Williams adds: "Special needs kids want to be able to show the world that they are hockey players and that they have dreams and goals just like everyone else. It was important for Brody not only to mentor Jacob but to learn about him as a person off the ice—what school he goes to, his favourite movies and the music he listens too. As parents, we need to teach our children acceptance and from acts of kindness we see amazing results."
Brody demonstrated a huge example of that on Saturday, and that impact he had may well have forged a bond to last a lifetime.
Lansdowne Place has launched a train at the mall this summer, and it's already been a hit with kids and their parents as Engineer Rick leads rides throughout the mall.
But those with sensory issues can also now enjoy "Lansdowne Place Station", as it's been fondly called by passengers. The mall has added a "Silent Train" to its trackless train inside the Shopping Centre on Sunday mornings before it opens for those with sensory sensitivites.
As many mall-goers know, the innovative mall has been running a "Silent Santa" as well for years during the Christmas season, and the mall wanted to offer the same experience to those families who want to use the train.
"There are many families in the community that benefit from our Silent Santa program so when we were asked by a parent if the mall would also host silent train rides, the answer was YES," says LP's marketing director Emily Dart. "We understand that the mall can be very overwhelming for an individual with sensory sensitivities, which is why the Silent Train runs each Sunday morning before Lansdowne Place opens. This will allow families to enjoy the train without the distraction of busy crowds and loud noises."
The "Silent Train" runs Sunday mornings from 10 a.m. to 10:45 am. on the upper level of the mall until August 27th.
For more details about the train, including a listing of the train’s operating hours, visit lansdowneplace.com.
Guiel was referring to his experience spending a day in a electric wheelchair—along with Peterborough Huskies General Manager Dave Tuck—in downtown Peterborough with local accessibility advocate Andrea Dodsworth, who lead the guys on the tour to show them what it's like to navigate stores and sidewalks.
Guiels spoke to 12 different business owners during the day about what they can do to make themselves more accessible, and met with Mayor Bennett to talk about the challenges and offer suggestions as to how to make the downtown more accessible. They also visited the Accessibility office at City Hall to discuss how they can work closer together on future accessibility projects.
After his experience, Guiel says it's important to be more pro-active when it comes to accessibility in the city. "It's the right thing to do to make yourself as accessible as possible," he says. "Our business community really wants to be accessible."
Guiels and Dodsworth realize there are a lot of costs associated with making older buildings and their architecture more accessible, but say there are smaller things that can be done right away—whether it's a ramp, the way that a door opens, the weight of a door.
Guiel and Dodsworth with Mayor Bennett
"Small changes turn into big ones," says Dodsworth.
Watch the highly educational video below to see the day through Terry's eyes...