About Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario
Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario is a registered not-for-profit, charitable agency dedicated to enhancing the lives of people who are affected by epilepsy through support services, education, advocacy, and community awareness.
Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario provides a range of services to those affected by epilepsy in Erie-St. Clair and Southwest LHIN region (Huron, Perth, Grey, Bruce, Oxford, Elgin, Thames Valley, Windsor, Essex, Sarnia, Lambton and Chatham-Kent counties).
About 14,000 people in this area have been diagnosed with epilepsy. The effect of an epilepsy diagnosis goes beyond the individual; it impacts the entire family.
Since passing our first constitution, Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario (ESWO) has focused on enhancing the lives of people who are affected by epilepsy through providing a network of services that educate, support and build community awareness. With twelve staff members, thirteen board members, and hundreds of volunteers, ESWO is thriving. ESWO continues to work in partnership with the Epilepsy Programs at London Health Sciences Centre to ensure that the non-medical needs of persons living with epilepsy are identified and supported.
Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario enhances the lives of people who are affected by epilepsy by providing a network of services that educate, support, and build community awareness.
We educate our communities about epilepsy and seizure first aid.
We dispel myths and break down the stigma of epilepsy.
We are there for people with epilepsy and their families.
Elanor McLean, whose child was diagnosed with epilepsy, hosted the first support meeting for London area families living with seizures. The informal group, called “Concerned Parents”, met regularly to discuss their children’s epilepsy. Eventually, stakeholders in the region formed Epilepsy Ontario’s Midwest Chapter, which ran an action group, a parent group and a recreational/social group.
Epilepsy Ontario’s Midwest Chapter opened their first office on London’s Dundas Street in 1977 and the organization hired staff to promote a public education program targeting primary and secondary schools.
The agency took a major step forward in 1983 and passed its first constitution as Epilepsy London & Area, serving London, Middlesex, Elgin, and Oxford counties.
As of 2001, Epilepsy London & Area expanded to include Sarnia Lambton and Chatham Kent. Since the agency began providing services beyond the London area, Epilepsy London & Area was renamed to Epilepsy Support Centre.
As of 2011, Epilepsy London & Area expanded to include Windsor Essex.
We have now become Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario and are growing each and every day!