Press Release for Freedom To Move 2024 (Toronto In-person Event)


For Immediate Release  


Amidst a landscape crowded with nonprofit contenders, two small yet impactful charities join forces to create a more sustainable event: Hydrocephalus Canada and Dystonia Medical Research Foundation Canada Partner to Host In-Person Walk Event Taking Place June 2nd, 2024 in Downsview Park, Toronto 


Toronto, ON - April 15, 2024 - Hydrocephalus Canada (HC) and Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) Canada are committed to serving the spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and dystonia populations across Canada. As leading organizations in their respective fields, HC and DMRF Canada are committed to empowering and advocating for these communities. Through this collaboration, they aim to raise awareness and support. 

Today, we are thrilled to announce our partnership for our combined in-person walk events: Hydrocephalus Canada's event: To register and find more information, visit here 

DMRF Canada's event: To register and find more information, visit here. 


This collaboration marks a significant milestone for all small nonprofits, pioneering this type of creative partnership. As our collective efforts become a stronger force together, doubling our ability to raise awareness and support in a more sustainable and impactful way, we hope more like-minded nonprofits will see the advantages and follow suit. 

"Over the past 30 years, I've witnessed the remarkable growth and impact of Hydrocephalus Canada's work in serving those in the spina bifida and hydrocephalus community. I'm excited to see how this celebration, kicking off June Awareness month, will further grow and create even more impact now and for years to come." - Shauna Beaudoin, Director of Programs & Information, Hydrocephalus Canada 


DMRF Canada, like HC, is a registered neurological health charity dedicated to serving its community across Canada.  

“Without government funding or widespread public awareness of our cause, our organization depends greatly on the generous contributions and support of our members and their networks. Over the past 40 years, the dystonia community's walk in Toronto has raised over 1 million dollars which has directly contributed towards advancements in research and support for our community. We are delighted to bring our Toronto communities together through this invaluable partnership.” - Archana Castelino, National Director, DMRF Canada.  

Both organizations understand the unique challenges associated with operating a small charity with a shared vision to raise funds, awareness, and inspire a better future for all. We aim to maximize our impact and administrative efficiencies, with the ability to invest more funds into programming for each of our respective organizations. 

The in-person 2km/5km walk event collaboration, will take place on June 2nd, 2024, at Downsview Park, Toronto, offering participants an opportunity to embrace the spirit of unity to double the awareness while enjoying live music, face painting, and appearances by the Hydrocephalus Canada ambassador Danny Lamb and DMRF Canada event ambassador, para swimmer - Sumbul Zafar, and more. 

Media Contact:                                                                       Media Contact 

Tanja Bessey, Community Engagement Manager              Archana Castelino, National Director 

Hydrocephalus Canada                                                             Dystonia Medical Research Foundation Canada 


About Dystonia and DMRF Canada: 


Dystonia is a neurological condition characterized by persistent or sporadic muscle contractions, causing abnormal repetitive movements or postures, at times resembling a tremor. Depending on the severity of the condition, patients are faced with varying degrees of disability or pain. 


DMRF was founded in 1976 by Samuel and Frances Belzberg of Vancouver after their daughter was diagnosed with generalized dystonia. The mission of  DMRF Canada is to advance research for more treatments and ultimately a cure; to promote awareness and education, and to support the needs and well-being of affected individuals and families. DMRF Canada is a registered non-profit Canadian charity governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. 


About Hydrocephalus Canada 

Hydrocephalus Canada (HC) is a leading organization dedicated to serving individuals with hydrocephalus and spina bifida. HC provides support, education, advocacy, and research initiatives to improve the lives of those impacted by these conditions. 


Spina bifida is a neural tube birth defect that occurs within the first four weeks of pregnancy, resulting in varying degrees of paralysis and permanent spinal cord and nerve damage. Surgery is performed to close the opening and reduce the risk of further damage. 


Hydrocephalus is a brain condition that can be present at birth or develop later in life. It develops when there's a blockage of cerebrospinal fluid, leading to excess fluid build-up in the brain. Surgery to implant a shunt device is usually required to manage fluid flow. 


Hydrocephalus Canada has a dedicated staff and a diverse Board of Directors with legal, financial, scientific, media, and nonprofit experience. It is guided by a Medical Advisory Board (MAB) comprised of international experts in hydrocephalus and spina bifida, ensuring it remains an authoritative voice for Canadians living with these conditions, helping them thrive. 

Last update: Apr 2024