Occupational therapy has a long and prestigious history in Canada.

To bring you the beginning of the story, it is necessary to go back to 1918 when occupational therapy education began at the University of Toronto. H.E.T. Haultain described the early course as "classes for the training of teachers of bedside and ward occupations for returned soldiers ... The aim of the work is partly therapeutic but also is closely related to preparation for a vocation and hence the classes are called classes in occupational therapy". Two important elements should be noted. First, occupational therapy has always been a discipline in its own right - it did not develop out of an existing profession. Secondly, occupational therapists from the beginning have been educated in Canada's universities.

Canada's contribution to occupational therapy goes beyond our own borders. Occupational therapists served as commissioned officers and saw service overseas during the Second World War, while other Canadians were instrumental in the development of occupational therapy educational programs in Scotland. Later Canada was to become a founding member of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists and many Canadians have been chosen to serve on the WFOT Executive Management Team.

Excerpt from the Occupational Therapy Anniversary
Calendar produced by CAOT in 1986