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Our History

Our journey began with a simple vision, to create a Home away from home for medically complex children and their families. But as we look back on those early days, we realize that we have become so much more. The Darling Home for Kids is filled with immense joy, a place where children are not only cared for but valued, cherished, and given the opportunity to thrive.

We are deeply grateful to the countless individuals who have helped make our vision a reality. From our generous donors to our committed volunteers, building partners, the community, and all of the friends who believed in us and helped us along the way, we thank you for your unwavering support and for being a part of our story.

The vision for The Darling Home for Kids was born out of a recognized need for community-based support for families caring for children with complex medical needs, many of whom were living with progressive, life-limiting illnesses. At the time, there were no facilities in Ontario that combined both respite and hospice palliative care for children in a home-like and fully equipped environment.

Today, as a leader in pediatric complex care, we remain the only organization in Canada to offer a continuum of care for medically complex children, through out-of-home respite, residential and hospice care services. Our goal is to provide a Home away from home for these children and their families, offering them love, care, and support.

The history of our charity includes many individuals who were instrumental in our success. Our founder Maggie Waligora was the original champion of our cause, David Bowker worked tirelessly to bring Maggie’s vision to life, the Cherry Family whose support during the early days enabled us to build our Home, and our government partners who understood our mission and need in our community and provided sustainable funding to achieve our goal.

We are grateful to our organization’s Guardians, Michele Darling, Michael Eagen and their family for their incredible support. Since 2007, the organization has been named in their honour and they have been thoughtful custodians, exemplifying our charity’s mission and vision.

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