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Two Seriously Ill Brothers Help Create Teddy Bear To Raise Funds For Charity

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Two Seriously Ill Brothers Help Create Teddy Bear To Raise Funds For Charity

Brothers Matteo and Nicco are newest designers of Starlight Children’s Foundation™ Canada’s 6th collectible bear, “Hiya”.

TORONTO, ON (November 25, 2014) - Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada in collaboration with Toys“R”Us Canada is proud to release their 6th Limited Edition Collectible Starlight Bear, Hiya. Designed by brothers Matteo and Nicco, Hiya is sold in Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us stores across the nation. A portion of Hiya’s sales will fund Starlight’s in and out-of-hospital programs, brightening the lives of seriously ill children across Canada.

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Both brothers, Matteo (five years old) and Nicco (three years old) have been battling cancer. At 16 months old, Matteo was diagnosed with the rare form of bladder cancer, Rhabomyosarcoma. During Matteo’s 3.5 years of treatment (resulting in the removal of his bladder and prostate), his brother Nicco was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. Nicco now begins his chemotherapy treatment with Matteo by his side in remission.

Matteo, Nicco and their family bonded over the creation of the 2014 bear. Hiya is the name of Matteo and Nico’s favourite blankey; a double sided cozy and warm blanket they take everywhere.  The bear was crafted to feel just like that same blankey, and named after a term their grandmother uses meaning “sleepy sleepy”. The brothers included a gold and purple ribbon on the bear’s foot, representing childhood cancer awareness, and the fight of thousands of other children living with life threatening illnesses.

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“The Starlight bear provides the opportunity to share stories of strength and courage with our supporters across the nation,” said Starlight executive director, Brian Bringolf. “We feel honoured to share Matteo and Nico’s moving story through our important and meaningful partnership with Toys”R”Us Canada.”

With the support of both employees and customers, Toys“R”Us Canada has raised over $12 million dollars for Starlight in the last 15 years.

Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada’s collectible bear Hiya is $14.99 and available in Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us stores across Canada and online at

For photos of Hiya, the brother designers and their family, please follow:

For more information, photos or interview requests, please contact:

Cory Stewart | Embrace Disruption PR

p: 647.638.1586 | e:

About Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada:

Starlight Children’s Foundation™ Canada is part of Starlight’s global network, serving kids and families through partnerships with more than 130 healthcare facilities. Over the past 30 years, Starlight has become a leading global charity that partners with experts to improve the life and health of kids and families around the world. Collaborating with innovators in pediatric healthcare, entertainment and technology, Starlight provides a unique blend of family-centered programs and services from hospital to home. Starlight partners with more than 1,750 healthcare facilities and pediatric hospitals in Australia, Canada, Israel, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States, serving millions of children every year.


Twitter: @StarlightCanada             #Hiya



About Toys“R”Us, Canada:

Toys“R”Us (Canada) Ltd., is part of Toys“R”Us, Inc., the world’s leading dedicated toy and juvenile products retailer. Toys“R”Us, Canada operates over 80 stores across the country. For store locations and convenient online shopping visit or

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