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Giving back: Murrayville family holds bottle drive for Canucks Autism Network

Sixth year of annual Langley fundraiser to support charity
A 12-year-old Ethan Saran helped out at the 2023 bottle drive organized by his family for the Canucks Autism Network (CAN). On Saturday, April 6, they family will be accepting donations at the corner of Fraser Highway and 222nd Street in the School District #35 parking lot from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Langley Advance Times files)

In Murrayville’s Saran family, if you can’t quite remember what was said, or who someone’s name is, mom Sherry says they ask her son, Ethan.

“If you had a conversation with him when he was two years old, he’ll remember it,” Sherry told the Langley Advance Times. “If we want to remember something where Ethan was present, we ask Ethan.”

And he has an impressive memory for sports stats.

There are times when Ethan even corrects his ‘big, big sports fan” dad Shawn, Sherry laughed.

Ethan, now 13, has come a long way since he was first diagnosed, at five, with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and a lot of that progress has been thanks to the Canucks Autism Network (CAN), Sherry said.

On Saturday, April 6, the Saran family will hold their sixth annual bottle drive to raise awareness and support for CAN and Autism Spectrum Disorder, at the corner of Fraser Highway and 222nd Street in the School District #35 parking lot. from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Paid-on-call firefighters from the Township of Langley Fire Department will also be lending their support and will be on site with a fire truck.

Flowers on 240th, a local florist will greet donors with a special gift as a thank you.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Huge turnout at Murrayville family’s bottle drive for autism

Last year, the Saran family bottle drive brought in a record $8,000, which they matched. To date, they’ve raised close to $40,000. 

“That’s just us, giving back,” Sherry commented.

“It’s just amazing how much money [the community] donates, and the bottles. We get families who have recently been diagnosed and come through to talk to us.

Her son still has challenges, including requiring speech therapy and other assistance, but he is continuing to make progress, his proud mom said.

“Ethan’s doing amazing,” Sherry said.

“We’ve seen so much success for Ethan throughout the years working with CAN, and they’re so underfunded, so we felt that, me being a realtor, I had the platform to give it more of an awareness.”

Founded in 2008 by Vancouver Canucks co-owners, Paolo and Clara Aquilini, whose son is on the autism spectrum, CAN is a registered charity that provides programs for individuals on the autism spectrum and their families, while promoting acceptance and inclusion through community engagement and training initiatives.

It’s estimated that one in 30 children and youth is on the autism spectrum, which means there are over 26,000 children and youth on the spectrum province-wide.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Langley family hosts autism awareness bottle drive

Dan Ferguson

About the Author: Dan Ferguson

Best recognized for my resemblance to St. Nick, I’m the guy you’ll often see out at community events and happenings around town.
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