Welcome to Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario's E-blast. Your quarterly newsletter from Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario covering the latest in epilepsy news from our clients, our agency, and around the world.
October 2018

Fall UpdatesLetter from the Chief Executive Officer

As the leaves fall and the weather gets colder, ESWO moves from our Seize the Day Run to our Ghouling Pianos event and then on to our Purdy's Chocolate holiday fundraising campaign! Seems odd to reference both 'Halloween' and 'Christmas' themed fundraisers in the same sentence, but that is the reality of a small non profit that relies on fundraising dollars to support its programs! 

We are so very grateful to everyone that braved the cold to attend the Seize the Day Walk/Run!  It is my absolute favourite ESWO event...seeing the sea of purple shirts and knowing that every single attendee is there because epilepsy has touched their life is truly heartwarming. While it is an amazing opportunity for people living with epilepsy to connect with other families, it is a bitter sweet event for those who attend in memory of a loved one they have tragically lost to a seizure. The goal of the event is to provide a community of belongingness and a sense of hope. Thank you to those who attended, those who volunteered their time and talent and those who donated to the event. Together, we raised over $51,000 to provide support and educational services to those living with epilepsy, their families and their communities! 

Warm Regards,

Michelle Franklin

Chief Executive Officer

Tom Stadnisky

Living with Epilepsy

Current President of the Board of Directors for Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario, Tom was diagnosed with epilepsy in 2003. He initially felt a sense of fear following the diagnosis, but that quickly changed when he was referred to ESWO. He found that the agency was extremely supportive of guiding him in the right direction. He began volunteering and later joined the Board of ESWO because he wanted to give back to the organization that had helped him through difficult times.

During his time as a Board Member, he has advocated for epilepsy awareness, supporting to “change the conversation”. When hospitals in London considered reducing the number of beds in their epilepsy unit, he personally went to the hospital and advocated to keep the beds. He has also been a spokesperson at events where he shares his journey with epilepsy.

Tom’s life changed dramatically eight years ago, when he underwent surgery to remove part of his left temporal lobe. Tom was initially apprehensive, as the surgery is done while the patient is awake and conscious. But today, has no regrets. As his seizures reduced, he was able to drive and be alone with his children, things that he was unable to do between his diagnosis and surgery. He credits the surgery with giving him a sense of freedom and independence he had not felt since being diagnosed.

He is pleased with the progress he has seen during his time with ESWO; with events like Purple Day increasing in engagement, and provincial epilepsy chapters becoming more connected. Looking to the future, he hopes that epilepsy awareness continues to grow and would like to see more individuals represent and “put a face” to epilepsy, in order to further awareness efforts. As Tom works to dispel stigma surrounding epilepsy, especially for patients who feel reluctant to admit their condition and seek help, he hopes his efforts will encourage individuals to be open to support and guidance.

Ghouling Pianos
Don't Miss This All-Request Piano Showdown Featuring Performers from Vegas

  • Friday, November 2, 2018 Doors open at 6 p.m.
  • Goodwill Industries, 255 Horton St. London
  • Tickets include hors d'oeuvers
  • Tickets available for purchase online or call the office to purchase over the phone.
Share Your Love of Chocolate and ESWO
Purdys Chocolatier Fundraising Program for the Holidays
Help support ESWO during this holiday season by purchasing some very sweet stocking stuffers, teacher gifts or treats for yourself with 25% of proceeds being donated back to public education.

Order by November 28. Pickup will be available in London, Sarnia, Chatham and Windsor on December 12.

Sign in and order here:

Win A Magical Family Trip To Disney 
Windsor Corporate Challenge

Enter for your chance to win a Magical Family Trip To Disney! Proceeds to support Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario. The winner will be selected on Monday, October 15th at 9 AM at the Vollmer Complex in LaSalle.

Tickets will be on sale until Monday, October 15th. Tickets are $50 each with only 400 tickets available. You must be 18 years or older to purchase a ticket.

Meet The Youth of our Fourth YEP! Group
Want to join in on the fun?

Email Jayme at for details on how to join our next YEP! Session.
Regional News & EventsLondon Middlesex

Support Group Meeting

  • Third Tuesday of every month  7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
  • Next Meeting Dates:
    • October 16, 2018
    • November 20, 2018
    • December 18, 2018
  • Discuss experiences and learn new information in a judgement-free environment
  • ESWO Main Office - 797 York St. Unit 3, London
  • Please RSVP to 519.433.4073 or
5th Annual Seize the Day

On behalf of all the staff, volunteers, Board Members and clients at ESWO, we would like to extend a heart-felt thank you to everyone for their contributions and continued support to our 5th Annual Seize the Day Event! On September 30, 2018 together, over 400 participants gathered at the Graham Family Eco Park to participate in a 2.5K Walk/ 5K Run. Over $51,000 was raised towards ESWO's support and education programs! We are happy to announce that this was a record year! Many new families joined the walk this year in honour or memory of someone affected by seizures & epilepsy, and we well surpassed our goal. Great job everyone!

Thank you to our event sponsors: McHardy Vacuum, Oke Woodsmith Building Systems Inc., Investors Group South London, Coulter’s Pharmacy & Home Health Care, Strik Baldinelli Moniz, Sunovion, Dad Club London, Techdoz, Bob Williams Tire & Auto Centre.

To view a complete list of all contributors and to see event photos, please visit our website:

Third Party: Klingon Assault Group

  • Thank you Klingon Assault Group for your donation of $79 and epilepsy awareness at the Forest City Comicon in London.

Chatham Kent

Education Event

  • Over 25 people enjoyed the meal at the Retro Suites in Chatham before learning the basics of epilepsy and how to live well with seizures. Epilepsy Educator, Sandra Pidduck was able to provide information and a display in the informal venue. Many of those who attended said that they wanted to connect with Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario for more information.
  • Thank you to UCB Canada for sponsoring this event.
Informal Support Meeting
  • An informal Support Meeting will be held later this fall in Chatham at a local cafe one evening. Sandra will send out a Doodle Poll to determine when this should occur.
  • Look for information in your email!

Windsor EssexSupport Group Meeting
  • Third Tuesday of every month,  6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
  • Next Meeting Dates:
    • October 23, 2018
    • November 20, 2018
    • December 18, 2018
  • Discuss experiences and learn new information in a judgement-free environment
  • Location: United Way
  • Please RSVP to 519.890.6614 or
2nd Annual Seize the Day Run/Walk

On behalf of Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario, we would like to personally thank everyone for their contributions to our 2nd Annual Seize the Day Event in Windsor Essex.

Together, approximately 160 participants raised over $20,000.00 towards ESWO's support and education programs in Windsor Essex. Thank you so much everyone for your hard work and dedication. Fantastic job!

Thank you to our event sponsors: N.J.A.D, AM800, BASF, Circle of Seven, Unifor Local 2458, KT Sales Inc., Bondy Bait Co., Kwik Paint Products, JD Custom, Axalta and Kimball.

To view complete list of all contributors and to see event photos, please visit our website:

Third Party: 7th Annual McGregor Mug Run
  • Thank you to Kristy and this year's McGregor Mug Run and 50/50 hosted in Windsor-Essex. Over 300 people attended!
  • A chicken dinner will be held at the McGregor K of C on October 25th.Tickets available at the McGregor Columbian Club at the bar.
  • Thank you for your continued support to our organization and we can't wait for next year!
Third Party: Superhero Takeover
  • Sunday, October 14, 2018 at the Ciociaro Club from 3:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
  • Proceeds benefiting Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario with partial proceeds to Cystic Fibrosis - Essex Kent Chapter

Sarnia LambtonSarnia Lambton Get Together 
  • Welcome to fall everyone!  We are going to have a Sarnia-Lambton get together on Monday, November 5th from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Sarnia Evangelical Missionary Church (707 Talfourd St., Sarnia). People of all ages welcome! Additional thanks to Sarnia Evangelical Missionary Church for the use of their space.
  • For more information call or text Deanna at 519-330-0416 or email at We hope to see you there!

Huron Perth 

Third Party: Ride for Epilepsy

  • On September 15th, Ride for Epilepsy took place in St.Mary's at the Pyramid Recreate Centre. The event included a bouncy castle, face painting, Static Emergency Vehicle Display, Stratford Police K9 Demonstration, Food Trucks and featured the Junior Red Riders.
  • Big thank you to Phil and all organizers who helped make this event happen! Thank you!

Grey BruceEducation Event

  • Thank you to those who attended and participated in our Epilepsy Information Night in Owen Sound with Dr. Young and Dr. McLachlan. We were fortunate to have over 60 people in attendance, with wonderful guest speakers.
  • Thank you to UCB Canada for sponsoring this event.
Third Party: Luscious Baker Deli Cafe
  • Thank you Luscious Bakery for your donation of $750 to ESWO and for the delicious cookies!

Copyright © 2014 Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario. Charitable Registration No.: 11890-0802-RR0001

Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario
797 York Street, Unit 3 | London, ON, N5W 6A8 | Canada

Tel: 519.433.4073 | Fax: 519.433.4079
Windsor Tel: 519.890.6614
Sarnia Tel: 519.330.0416
Chatham Tel: 519.365.5131