Below is a list of programs offered by DSAT and other organization in Toronto.
To see the program details, simply click on the name.
- Active Start & FUNdamentals Programs
- Bust a Move Dance (BAMD)
- Camp Diversability
- Creative Movement Made for Me
- Creative Village Studio
- Dance Rock Central
- Dance Rock West
- DSAT Pal Programs
- East End Children's Center
- Kitchen Talk
- Laura Hunter's STEPS Programs
- Meta Centre
- Miles Nadal JCC
- Music Circle
- New & Expecting Parent Coffee Night
- PAL 0-3 Miles Nadal JCC Jungle Gym
- Parents and Infants Group
- PAL 19+ (for Adults with DS)
- Purple Carrots Inclusive Drama Classes
- Recreational Programs & Activities
- Ruddy's Place: Program for Young Adults with Disabilities
- Saturday Speech, Drama & Social Skills Club
- SEC Summer Camp
- The Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre
- Youth Action Committee (YAC)
- Variety Village
- We Dance
- Yoga for Children & Adults with Special Needs
Active Start & FUNdamentals Programs
Active Start, along with FUNdamentals, is one of two initiatives developed by Special Olympics Canada for young athletes. Active Start is a family-centred activity program for children with an intellectual disability ages 2-6. Through the program, children learn basic motor skills such as walking, running, jumping, balancing and throwing in a fun and safe environment. These skills provide support for everyday activities as well as a base for Special Olympics sports training and competition as athletes grow older.
Age: Two to six
Priority: Active participation for fun, development of physical literacy
Objective: Develop play skills through movement and daily physical activity
Skills: Walking, running, jumping and balancing, throwing, catching, kicking, striking etc.
FUNdamentals, along with Active Start, is one of two initiatives developed by Special Olympics Canada for young athletes. FUNdamentals is a continuation of the Active Start program for athletes with an intellectual disability ages 7-12. This program transitions from basic movement skills to basic sport and physical literacy skills while maintaining an atmosphere of fun and meaningful interaction. This program also promotes specific sport education, proper nutrition, and social inclusion through participation in positive sport environment. The skills learned in this program provide support for everyday activities as well as a base for Special Olympics sports training and competition as athletes grow older.
Starting Age: Seven to twelve
Priority: Development of Fundamental Movement Skills
Objective: Physical Literacy
Skills: Basic Sport Movement Skills, ie. Running, kicking, jumping, throwing, catching, striking, etc.
Bust a Move Dance (BAMD)
Classes: Download Brochure
Bust a Move Dance (BAMD) is an Australian born social business that has recently expanded to Toronto. BAMD works with students of all ages and abilities. Dance sessions are all about inclusiveness, having fun, releasing energy and fostering the development of independence and creativity through the vehicle of dance.
BAMD hosts classes and workshops at various locations in the GTA and are proud to be working with students with a wide range of disabilities including Autism, Down Syndrome, Deafness, intellectual impairments and physical disabilities, to name a few. BAMD encourages 100% independence from students, naturally allowing a huge development in confidence.
BAMD’s vision is that people of all abilities feel equal and powerful in the world. BAMD provides a safe space for people of all abilities to independently create and express themselves and believe people of all abilities have a voice to make change. BAMD aims to do this through the vehicle of dance, encouraging young people with disabilities to become resilient and social within their own communities and in turn, develop their self-confidence. Through dance, we enable people of all abilities to belong and create change.
647 703 8947
Operations, Marketing & Events
647 550 5703
Creative Movement Made for Me
This year DSAT ( www.dsat.ca) is once again delighted to partner with The School of Toronto Dance Theatre (www.schooloftdt.org) in offering an integrated creative movement class for children with Down syndrome. Creative Movement Made for Me is an integrated class for kids of mixed abilities and diverse learning styles. The class addresses needs that are not easily met in a standard dance class. Kids move and dance in an environment that is sensitive to their abilities and potential and is filled with positive energy! The class is taught by our Young Dancers' Program director Michelle Silagy, a certified DanceAbility master teacher, along with supportive and enthusiastic assistants.
Fall program info is coming soon.
One Week, Adult, Sleep-Away, Leadership Program
August 6 - 11, 2019
Supporting the Development of Special Leaders
NOW ACCEPTING REGISTRATIONS
Camp Diversability is a volunteer-based, collective effort which brings together motivated young adults, with ‘special needs’ or ‘alternate abilities,’ who wish to work on personal growth, leadership, confidence and ways to contribute their gifts in their community in order to strengthen self-esteem and personal power. Each person can be a leader, in their own right, and share their unique gifts.
Camp Diversability’s host location is Unicamp of Ontario, deep in the UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve Forest. Operating for 45+ years, spring, summer and fall, and is an off-the-grid, eco-conscious community. For more information about Unicamp, please visit their site: www.unicampofontario.ca
Camp Diversability creates opportunities for participants to learn about, develop collectively and demonstrate their leadership skills through interactions with each other, within the Unicamp community, through the year and beyond camp. This year the campers will be challenged with planning and organizing a talent show from start to finish which they will perform for the larger Unicamp community.
Space is created for organic learning opportunities to arise and making sure there is time to enjoy a wide range of recreational activities, including swimming, caving, trekking on the Bruce Trail, arts, crafts, dance and sports.
Unicamp has similar values to Camp Diversability’s, which are to:
• understand and acknowledge the importance of each person
• seek kindness in all we do
• foster the freedom to learn together and to search for what is true
• affirm that all people need a voice
• work to build a fair and peaceful world
• care for our sacred earth with awareness of the interconnectedness of all beings and circumstances
It is unanimous that last summer was a great success! We had a group of devoted volunteers who worked with engaged participants who were enriched by the experience. The volunteers learned so much from the participants as well.
As a way to enhance their leadership opportunities, and deepen their friendships, our returning participants are now Directors of Camp Diversability. They gather together every two months to make decisions regarding the next camp (2018).
WAYS TO SUPPORT CAMP DIVERSABILITY, *See our website or contact us for further details.
• be a Male or Female Senior or Junior Team Mentor at camp
• workshop/presenter at camp (come to Unicamp and teach a workshop in drama, music, arts or dance or what you feel would benefit the campers and eat and spend the rest of the day with us.)
• help us research busing options and funding
• connect us to private or corporate funding
• help organize and/or support at the bi-monthly Directors meetings, held in Toronto and York Region
• provide a mid-city location for our Director meetings
• send us leadership stories of how you have been inspired and positively impacted by a great leader, which we can post on the website.
• help us with social media
• spread the word about this project and share our website
If you feel that you would like to catch this wave and ride it with us, please contact us to see how you can add your power, support and skills to the mix. Camp Diversability Team Mentors are excited to learn what we can from our participants and volunteers. Let’s see what kind of magic we can create together!
Down Syndrome Association of Toronto
Facebook: Camp Diversability (please "like" us)
Creative Village Studio
Fall program info is coming soon
Dance Rock Central
Fall program info is coming soon.
Dance Rock West
Fall program info is coming soon.
At DramaWay we provide process-based arts programs that facilitate social and life-skills development. We are dedicated to providing unique creative programs that help participants expand their artistic skills and grow as individuals in a structured, non-competitive, inspirational atmosphere. DramaWay programs span the realm of the fine arts. Programs offered include theatre, dance, film, music, visual arts and even puppetry. All programs are created, geared and modified to suit individuals of all abilities. We specialize in working with individuals who have special needs.
DramaWay Summer Camp 2019
Tuesday Night ShakespeareWorks Camp exposes participants to the world of theatre and dance inspired by the work of Shakespeare. The group will work towards showcasing a small piece on the final camp date for family and friends.
This program runs on Tuesday evenings for eight weeks.
Starts July 2, 2019
MultiArtWorks Evening Camp spans the realm of fine arts while engaging participants in the three disciplines of drama, dance and visual arts. A small open class showcase will be developed based on participants’ particular interests and talents. The Showcase takes place on the final camp date for family and friends. This program will run on Thursday evenings for eight weeks.
Starts July 4, 2019
This full-day, multi-arts summer program run by DramaWay at ErinoakKids offers participants varied means of creative expression through drama, dance and visual art activities that build communication skills, encourage the development of social skills and enhance self-esteem – along with the joy of being creative and having fun.
Starts July 22nd, 2019
ActingWorks is an extension of DramaWay’s popular DramaWorks program. ActingWorks is an intensive 10-day program focused on theatre training for those interested in entering the professional acting world. It gives youth and adults with special needs of ALL abilities the opportunity to access quality,
in-depth training which will help provide specific and tailored training for those interested in pursuing a serious career in the theatre community. Past attendees and new members are welcome!
August 6-9 & 12-16, 2019
Showcase Camp: Performers of all abilities are welcome to attend and enjoy a week of exploration and creativity. Actors will collaborate with DramaWay Facilitators to develop a Performance Piece which will be showcased for family and friends on the final day of camp.
August 19-23, 2019
DSAT Pal Programs
Keeping with the importance of building social networks, DSAT is extremely excited to offer our new "DSAT PAL (Play and Learn) Programs". The PAL programs will offer various events and activities to help develop and nurture a social network while learning and having fun with peers.
PAL 03 (Ages 0 to 3)
DSAT's PAL03 morning play group will be held the last Wednesday and Sunday of each month. This event will offer parents an opportunity to socialize with other parents of children with Down syndrome while their children play and interact with their peers. Siblings are welcome to join. All playgroups are held at The Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre 750 Spadina Ave. Toronto, ON
PAL 05 (Ages 0 to 5)
Through the DSAT PAL 05, our children will establish friendships that will be sure to last a lifetime. DSAT's Saturday morning play group offer parents an opportunity to socialize with other parents of children with Down syndrome while their children play and interact with their peers. Siblings are welcome to join. All playgroups are held at Kidnetix Play Centre Address: 100 Bridgeland Ave. Unit#1 North York, ON M6A 2V1
PAL 612 (Ages 6 to 12)
DSAT PAL 612 is designed for children with Down syndrome to nurture friendships in a fun, social setting. Places will be chosen to encourage appropriate socialization, play, and interaction for all children. Siblings are welcome to join in on the fun, and build friendships with other siblings as well. Parent involvement will be hands on while sharing in the company of others. For 2014/2015 DSAT will be expanding their Saturday morning playgroup to include children up to age 12. All playgroups are held at Kidnetix Play Centre Address: 100 Bridgeland Ave. Unit#1 North York, ON M6A 2V1
PAL 1319 (Ages 13 to 19)
This unique PAL 1319 program is designed for teens with Down syndrome to meet new friends, gain independence and develop life skills through fun, social outings with other teens with DS. Each outing will be organized, led and fully supervised by the DSAT PAL 1319 team consisting of parents, professionals and volunteers. Such outings will include, but not limited to movies, bowling, dinner, etc. and will occur once a month throughout the year.
East End Children's Center
Laura Hunter's STEPS Programs
Saturday Recreation and Leisure Fun
For youths and adults 13+ years old with developmental disabilities.
Young adults will have the opportunity to establish a peer network within a structured social and recreational program.
Families will be able to connect with others and gain support and information for future support needs.
Who can attend
Young adults with developmental disabilities 13+. Young adults must be able to work within 1 to 4 ratio with staff. If parents would like to send their young adults with a 1:1 worker, space is available to accommodate such requests.
4801 Keele Street, Unit 13
Hours of Operation
10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
$10.00 per day
To register your daughter and/or son for the Saturday Program, please contact:
(416)736-0199 -- Erin Mittlemen at ext.239 or Robert Passaro at ext. 241
You will be required to attend an Intake Meeting to gather pertinent information.
Please note you can register at any time!
Miles Nadal JCC
DSAT is Partnering with the MNJCC
The Down Syndrome Association of Toronto (DSAT) is partnering with the Miles Nadal JCC to offer the DSAT community access to programs!
Families from the DSAT community can receive a one time discount of 21% of the fees up to a maximum of $100.00.
Visit the Miles Nadal JCC website for more program information.
Check out Fall-Winter 2018-19 Program Guide at Miles Nadal JCC
An After-School Group Music Therapy Program
The Music Circle is an integrated group music therapy program for children between the 8 - 11 with various needs. It is an after-school program in which participants will be invited to share music and friendship, while expanding skills in many areas including social, emotional, language, cognitive, and motor development. This ten-week program will be introduced and facilitated through musical experiences including singing, instrument playing, improvising, and song-writing. The children will have opportunities to build on their strengths as well as address their challenges with support. The focus of the program will be on building social skills such as turn taking, sharing, co-operation, initiation, self-expression, problem solving, and appropriate expression of emotions. This program could also be an excellent opportunity for siblings of children with special needs to learn and participate in a fun and normalized after-school activity with their siblings.
Primary program goals
- To provide a safe and creative environment that will help children to enhance their skills
- To provide outlets for emotions
- To facilitate social interaction with peers
- To enhance communication skills
- To increase children’s self-esteem by providing them with successful experience
- To facilitate creative self-expression through exploring various instruments including voice
- To provide an enjoyable experience
- Previous music training is not required.
Andrea Lamont, MTA, is a music therapist who works with a variety of challenges including developmental delays, cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, William’s Syndrome, and Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Andrea encourages active participation in the music presented to develop social skills and to encourage expressive communication. This may include instrument manipulation, singing, movement, or listening. In addition to her private practice, Andrea also works at the Bloorview MacMillan Children’s Centre as a creative arts therapies team member. and as a researcher on music technology projects such as the “Virtual Musical Instrument”.
MusiConnects offers individual and small group music therapy sessions to children and adolescents with special needs including Down syndrome, autism, and learning disabilities.
Music therapy and music enrichment groups are also available for babies (newborns - 3 yrs.) and parents. In addition, individually tailored piano lessons that focus on the process of learning and self-expression are offered to individuals with special needs.
New & Expecting Parent Coffee Night
PAL 0-3 Miles Nadal JCC Jungle Gym
PAL 19+ (for Adults with DS)
The PAL19+ program is designed for adults with Down syndrome (DS) to meet new friends, promote independence and develop life skills through fun, social outings with other adults with DS.
Each month, the events will consist of a dinner and social organized, lead and fully supervised by the DSAT PAL19+ team consisting of professionals and volunteers. The group will venture to various restaurants throughout the city of Toronto, close to public transportation to dine and mingle with old friends and new.
All PAL19+ events are drop off programs. Should an adult require their own support person, please contact one of our team members to make arrangements.
Parents and Infants Group
Purple Carrots Inclusive Drama Classes
Purple Carrots Drama Studio is an inclusive space which encourages growth in self awareness and social skills through the arts. Combining elements of drama, play therapy, dance, visual art and relaxation into theme-based workshops, we help our students explore their full potential in a safe, supportive and fun environment!
Purple Carrot Summer Drama Camp 2019 Download the flyer.
Purple Carrot Fall Program 2019
Inclusive Drama Fall Workshops Starting September 7
Registration now opens for fall and winter workshops. Register online at https://www.purplecarrotsdrama.com/fall
180 Shaw St. Toronto, ON. (classes for all ages)
491 Eglinton Ave. West Toronto, ON. (classes for ages 6-10 only)
3825 Bloor St. West Toronto, ON. (classes for ages 2-5 & 6-10 only)
40 Samor Rd Toronto, ON. (classes for adults only)
Recreational Programs & Activities
Developmental Services Toronto
Listing of Recreational Programs and Activities for Individuals with a Developmental Disability Learn More
Ruddy's Place: Program for Young Adults with Disabilities
Ruddy’s Place offers: A place for young adults living with disabilities to learn job readiness skills, daily living skills and an opportunity to socialize!
- Job Readiness – Through a series of tailored workshops and lessons that work towards helping clients find jobs that are based on client’s goals, strengths and interests.
- Daily Living Skills – Clients will have opportunities to practice and develop independence – In areas such as community safety, cooking, time management, problem solving and other daily living skills goals set by the client.
- Community Engagement and Activities
- Social Skills Development
*If you register now for three months you will receive fifteen percent off!*
- Professional Development – We are offering training for professionals and agencies to support inclusion
- Parent Coaching
Below you will find a letter describing the programs in further detail and our flyer!
Saturday Speech, Drama & Social Skills Club
Participants are seen individually for speech therapy while the remainder of the group is busy dancing, singing, acting out stories, cooking, playing cooperative games, dressing up, role playing... All activities focus on communication & socialization. Preschool, school-age & teen groups are available.
SEC Summer Camp
It is a place where youth can come to make new friends, participate in the arts and enjoy both indoor and outdoor activities. Also great for families who are looking for a day program to transition their child into.
High school students come to join in our day program from 9:30am to 3:00pm
We encourage everyone to participate in the variety of activities that revolve around the arts primarily drama, dance, visual arts and music. Outings and field trips are scheduled accordingly to support our weekly agenda.
It is a time to participate, socialize, make new friends, interact with community partners who also come and visit along with volunteers and staff.
The Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre
Youth Action Committee (YAC)
The Down Syndrome Association of Toronto (DSAT) is partnering with Variety Village to offer the DSAT community access to programs!
Families from the DSAT community can receive a one time discount of 21% of the fees up to a maximum of $100.00.
Variety Village offers:
- Parent and Tot Programs
- Fitness Programs
- Aquatics Programs
- Wellness & Recreation Programs
- Learn to Play Programs
- After School Programs
And much more!
We Dance is a dance project celebrating integrated dance practices with differently abled movers. The class is open to youth and adults aged 16+ with mixed abilities. We Dance is presented by The School of Toronto Dance Theatre in partnership with Canada’s National Ballet School, one of the world's foremost training institutions for aspiring young dancers and teachers.
Baby Sign Language for Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers, too!
Long before your baby can speak, she has the ability to understand speech & wants to communicate with you. Most babies are able to sign back to you by the time they are 8-12 months of age.
Since 2001, certified WeeHands Instructors have taught thousands of families & caregivers to sign with their children. WeeHands teaches you & your family American Sign Language signs, songs & language development strategies to use with your little one!
To read more about WeeHands go to
Yoga 4 Kids
Yoga for Children & Adults with Special Needs
Yoga for the Special Child(R) is a therapeutic program of yoga techniques that enhances the natural development of infants, toddlers and children with special needs. The classes include music and sound therapy, eye exercises, yoga poses, breathing techniques, relaxation and meditation. Yoga for the Special Child(R) is internationally recognized and was established by Sonia Sumar in 1972.
Sherry LeBlanc is the director of Yoga 4 Kids and has been teaching adults for 33 years and children’s yoga for 15 years. Sherry is a Licensed Practitioner of and Certified Program Teacher for YSC(R).
Location: Flow! Yoga and Wellness, 408 Dupont St. (on the north side between Howland Ave. & Brunswick Ave.)