'Mighty' Mason Leading Lansdowne Heroes

A HERO STORY | A little guy with a BIG smile, 'Mighty' Mason Boughner is representing more than 3,000 children and youth helped annually by Lansdowne Children's Centre, as client ambassador to this year's Heroes Walk and Roll event hosted by Lansdowne Foundation. And his Hero Squad of family and friends is leading by example in a BIG way.


A young boy, Mason, sits in a play area wearing a blue Superman t-shirt.
MIGHTY Mason is the 2022 Heroes Walk and Roll ambassador, representing more than 3,000 children and youth served annually by Lansdowne Children's Centre

Mason was born at 27 weeks gestation and weighed only 1.8lbs. With his weakened lungs, he required a lengthy hospital stay of 451 days at McMaster Children's Hospital, where he underwent numerous treatments, 3 surgeries and some very scary days.


In need of breathing support, Mason had surgery for a tracheostomy that would allow him to be able to be ventilated at home. His parents completed extensive training for three months to ensure his safety, and set-up a mini intensive care unit in their living room at home.


a small baby, preemie, with breathing tubes
#preemiestrong Mason was born at 27 weeks, weighing under 2 pounds.

On arriving home, Mason and family turned to Lansdowne Children's Centre for support. Mason needed help to develop the skills he didn't get the opportunity to develop during his first year in hospital, and his family found guidance on the supports and resources available.


Lansdowne helped our family to transition home from a hospital setting and ensured we were getting the help we needed. The biggest thing they did is instill confidence in us as parents that we were doing the right things, and supporting us in the decisions we made for Mason's development plan.

Team Mighty Mason is giving back, supporting Lansdowne Children's Centre Foundation with fundraising leadership that has already surpassed $7,000 and continues to gain momentum as Mason and his family share his Lansdowne story.


His grandfather, 'Poppy' Brian Sullivan, has actively engaged his social network to raise awareness for Lansdowne and share his family's connection with the Brantford-based children's treatment centre.


He (Mason) still has a trach with ventilator but that has never slowed this kid down. He and I (his Poppy) golf, go for bike rides, play a little pickleball (a work still in progress) and roughhouse quite a bit.

With development needs that required attention from multiple specialties, Mason was directed to HITs (Holistic Integrated Teams), so that his team of clinicians could coordinate communication and information. During the pandemic, Lansdowne adapted to provide virtual and outdoor sessions to ensure Mason could be kept safe but still develop his skills.


Mason's mom, Karissa, shares, "The physiotherapist on his team was able to see Mason outside and observe his movements and stance. She was able to determine that Mason would benefit from wearing SMOs (a foot brace) to help support his gross motor skills and directed us to a business that could provide them. The occupational therapist created virtual sessions to engage Mason in various sensory play and fine motor tasks. She was able to recommend different strategies to help Mason overcome his sensory avoidance and strengthen his long fingers for fine motor tasks. The speech language pathologist provided guidance on how to develop Mason's communication skills through play despite Mason not being able to talk. He also submitted the paperwork for Mason to have access to a communication device. The social worker would touch base with us to ensure financial and emotional resources were being utilized as needed."


We are very appreciative to Lansdowne for helping us to navigate Brantford as parents of a medically complex child.

MIGHTY Mason and his Poppy, together they are leading Heroes Walk and Roll fundraising.

Lansdowne Children's Centre continues to provide support in Mason's development today, including a successful entry to daycare by providing strategies to the family and care provider on how to ease his transition into the new environment. Lansdowne helped to prepare a report for his transition to school and provide timelines of meetings to discuss his safety plans. Mason is learning to interact with other kids his age and to follow routines.


We're all looking forward to sharing our appreciation on Saturday October 1st at Brant Park, and recognizing the outstanding efforts made by Mason and his family to represent Lansdowne Foundation and the Heroes Walk and Roll.