Difference Maker Program

A program to inspire, empower and recognize students who make a difference in their community.



The elementary Difference Maker Program introduces students to the concept of a Difference Maker and to the different ways young people can be Difference Makers in their homes, their school and their communities. It includes lesson plans, resources and classroom projects, and is easily incorporated into existing curriculum, timetables and lessons.

The Program culminates in an award ceremony to recognize students who have made a difference in the school or local community.

The Program builds key skills such as communication, team building and leadership.


The secondary Difference Maker Program teaches students to identify and act upon their vision for creating positive change. It includes lessons that teach goal setting, analysis, and planning and presentation skills, with a strong emphasis on collaboration and inclusive teamwork. Students build towards creating and carrying out their own campaign to create positive change in their school or local community.

Students can receive Letters of Recognition from the Rick Hansen Foundation to recognize the time and effort put into their campaign and acknowledge the skills and experience they obtained through the Program.


Help cultivate qualities exemplified by Rick Hansen and his work: determination, inspiration, courage, leadership, teamwork, and making a difference in the lives of others.

Take a look at our Difference Maker stories to be inspired by young people who have already made a difference.

You need to create an account to access our resources.

Creating an account is free and takes less than two minutes.

If you already have an account, you can access all Difference Maker Program resources online.

Our free toolkit includes:

  • lesson plans,
  • class projects,
  • videos,
  • books,
  • posters,
  • certificates,
  • worksheets ... and more!
"One father took me aside and said this was one of the finest things that we had done and that he was moved to tears!" Les Raskewicz, BC
"It is wonderful to have a program that encourages young people to look outward at the society around them and consider what they can do to make a difference." Zenobia Ali, parent

Find out about Abilities In Motion, our program to support disability awareness, accessibility and inclusion in schools across Canada.