Childhood Arthritis Backpack Program
Arthritis can rob young people of their childhood. The Arthritis Society’s Childhood Arthritis Backpack Program hands back childhood and helps kids be kids. Launched in March 2013 in recognition of Childhood Arthritis Month, the program delivers a backpack filled with knowledge and tools families and children need to help children with arthritis lead healthier, more fulfilling lives.
Each year, families of children diagnosed with arthritis receive backpack vouchers from paediatric rheumatologists and rheumatology clinics across Canada. The Arthritis Society then delivers backpacks to these families. The backpack was selected based on the recommended guidelines of the Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation, and has been reviewed by a registered physiotherapist and an occupational therapist. Each backpack has broad straps, padding, and waist support to minimize strain on the vulnerable joints of young people with arthritis.
Each backpack includes:
- an instructional video for parents and caregivers about how to fit, pack, and safely wear the backpack
- a plush teddy bear with a removable warming and cooling pack to ease sore joints
- a family informational resource about helping young people live well with arthritis
- pencil grips and zipper pulls
- an award-winning children’s book that explains chronic pain
- an illustrated booklet that shares the experiences of other children living with arthritis
The Childhood Arthritis Backpack Program helps newly diagnosed children and their families learn to manage arthritis.
Change a Life
24,000 Canadian children and teens live with arthritis. Help hand back childhood by making a donation today.