FOWC Impact Update

An Update from our President

On behalf of the Friends of Ostomates Worldwide (Canada) team, I am excited to provide you with a progress update on our current activities and our ongoing impact.  

2022 was a strong year for us, and one in which we shipped $540,000 of donated ostomy products to ostomates in need overseas – a 67% increase over 2021.

I am delighted to report that 2023 is ramping up to be even stronger!  With your ongoing help, we have the opportunity this year to not only exceed our 2022 impact by 50%, but also to exceed pre-pandemic levels of shipments!   

I am also pleased to share that you can expect to start receiving regular updates from us, highlighting our key successes and important information about our plans, our priorities, and where we need your help.

We could not do what we do without your support, for which I extend our sincere thanks – to the tireless contributions of our team of volunteers, and the invaluable financial and product donations from you, our supporters across the country.


Lorne Aronson
Lorne Aronson

Who we work with & why:  

  • For the last 10 years, we have been working closely with Astom – Ukraine’s primary Ostomy Association in Kyiv – to provide local ostomates with access to supplies.  Since the outbreak of war in February 2022, the need has become even greater.  Direct transportation is impossible in the current conditions, so shipments are sent via air freight to Warsaw, Poland, from where the supplies are transported overland, across the border, to the capital. 

Our impact year to date: 

  • The volume of supplies shipped: 6 pallets  / 1,470 kg
  • Estimated retail value of supplies shipped: $202,500

Who we work with & why:  

  • In early 2023, we initiated our partnership with The Kenya Ostomy Association (KOA) in Nairobi – a new and focused organization formed by a long-term contact and partner of FOWC, with a mission to support ostomates in Kenya and further afield in East Africa.  Supplies are sent via air freight direct to Nairobi, and delivered to the KOA for free distribution to association members.

Our year-to-date impact 

  • The volume of supplies shipped: 4 pallets  / 980 kg
  • Estimated retail value of supplies shipped: $135,000.

Who we work with & why:  

  • For 5 years now we have partnered with the Iran Ostomy Association (IOA), located in Tehran, Iran, which supports ostomates across the country who otherwise would simply not have access to affordable supplies.  Supplies are sent via air freight direct to Tehran, and following lengthy government inspection, the donated supplies are released to the IOA.  

Our year-to-date impact 

  • The volume of supplies shipped: 3 pallets  / 735 kg
  • Estimated retail value of supplies shipped: $101,250.
Rest Of The World

Who we work & and why:

  • Earlier this year, MEMO Ministry reached out to us expressing a need for ostomy supplies in the communities that they support in Cuba and Zimbabwe.  Product donations were sent to MEMO Ministry’s facilities in Thunder Bay, where they were consolidated with other much-needed medical supplies and sent onwards to needy healthcare facilities in Zimbabwe and Cuba.  Our thanks to the team at MEMO Ministry and the Zimbabwe Gecko Society for the great work they are doing, and for their partnership to assist ostomates in need overseas.

Our year-to-date impact 

  • The volume of supplies shipped: 2 pallets  / 570 kg
  • Estimated retail value of supplies shipped: $80,000.
We Need Your Help

Thanks to our generous product donors our warehouse shelves are stocked full of products.   We have 3 – 4 additional shipments lined up for this Fall.

We need $10,000 to get these shipments out of the door and on their way overseas to ostomates in need.

Please consider donating today.  Every dollar donated goes directly towards the costs to store and ship donated supplies.

For information on how to donate or to ask any questions of the team, please reach out to us at or visit our website at

Thank you for your support!

Tanya Schmitt
FOWC Treasurer (Interim)
t: (416) 399-4110

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