Twelve Seriously Ill Canadian Children Aim to Raise $30,000 for Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada Over The Holidays
TORONTO, ON (December 10, 2019) – This holiday season, 12 thoughtful seriously ill children are working with Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada to provide toys to hospitalized sick kids across Canada. Each with the goal of raising $2,500, the Starlight children are being matched and supported by several generous sponsors and celebrity ambassadors. The campaign, aptly named “12 Kids of Starlight”, aims to raise a total of $30,000 for the charity.
“Each year, thousands of children’s hospital beds are filled with kids who are too sick to go home for the holidays or celebrate with their families and loved ones. Kids who may not have a chance to celebrate another holiday,” says Starlight Canada executive director Brian Bringolf. “The donations received over the next month will help Starlight bring a bit of normalcy, comfort and joy to over 100 children’s wards this holiday season.”
Joining the 12 children (listed below) in their impressive philanthropic efforts are a number of generous sponsors who have agreed to match funds raised by each child. Sponsors include Samfiru Tumarkin LLP, iFinance, Access Storage, CANADALEND.COM, Serve Construction Ltd., Alutron Modules, Magen Boys, Gluckstein Lawyers, Hunter Dental, and grand prize sponsor Air Canada Foundation.
Additionally, many well-known Canadians are showing their online support for the 12 Starlight kids including Rick and Angie Campanelli, Ann Kaplan (Real Housewives of Toronto), Hilary Farr (Love It or List It), Simone Denny (Love Inc.), Cindy Sampson (Private Eyes) and many more.
Interested donors to the 12 Kids of Starlight campaign can visit https://12kids.starlightcanada.org/ for more information. For each $10 donation, names are entered in a prize pool draw which includes exclusive items such as two Economy Class return tickets for any scheduled Air Canada destination in North America, including Hawaii, Mexico and the Caribbean; 14K Yellow Gold Diamond Earrings; an Ultimate Day of Golf package from Lebovic Golf Club and many more.
Meet the 12 Kids of Starlight (view photos by clicking here)
Alisha was born not breathing and without a heartbeat for a staggering 26 minutes. This led to multiple organ failure and brain damage. As a result, Alisha has had 33 anaesthesia’s, a lot of daily medication and a g-tube to be fed at night. She has also received a kidney transplant. Alisha has spent 4 Christmases and birthdays in hospital. Through Starlight, Alisha gets some breaks from her worries so she can just have fun!
Qadim has Angelman’s syndrome, a neurological condition which affects coordination, cognitive development, and speech. Although he is non-verbal and requires many days in the hospital each year, Qadim is rarely without a smile on his face and is keen to always help other people. Through Starlight, Qadim has seen a whole new, accessible side of life and loves every adventure he goes on!
Avery was born at just 28 weeks gestation and immediately spent the first three months of her life in the NICU. During those first few days she had a major brain bleed which led to fluid on the brain and the development of spastic hemiplegia – a form of cerebral palsy. Now, a huge Shawn Mendes fan and a girl discovering her passions, Avery turns to Starlight to help her have fun days out in between her hospital visits.
Delainey was born with a rare chromosome abnormality: Full Trisomy 13 / Patau syndrome. With just a 10% chance of surviving to her first birthday, now 7-years-old Delainey is defying all the odds. She was super excited to see Barbie + Fashionistas Wheelchair doll released this year, and with the help of her family, is spreading the word that inclusivity and representation in toys is vital for the critically ill community!
Madison has cerebral palsy and nephrotic syndrome. Her life has been filled with appointments, therapies, surgeries and doctors appointments. Being a part of Starlight’s programs, ensures that Madison and her family have time to spend together, to have a break from the treatments, and be around other families going through similar situations as themselves.
Mia has the degenerative and chronic condition cystic fibrosis, which causes thicker, stickier mucus than usual to accumulate in many vital organs of the body. Despite this disease having no cure, a strict daily medication schedule and an inability to meet people with the same condition due to the risk of cross infection, Mia lives life to the fullest and ensures she can have fun with Starlight through our programming.
Cole has an unknown form of Muscular Dystrophy, severe scoliosis, a single kidney, deafness in his left ear, asthma and a feeding tube. Despite this plethora of illnesses, Cole finds ways to do everything that his friends are able to do, including racing in cars at Starlight’s Drive 4 Smiles event! Cole constantly proves to people that no matter what obstacles lay in your way, you can still live life to the fullest!
Cori has a lesion in her brain which causes seizures and sudden paralysis. Not knowing when an attack will occur or what side effects her endless medications will bring, her illness limits a lot of fun in life. But with Starlight’s accessible events and not taking ‘no’ for an answer when it comes to inclusion, Cori knows she’s not alone when she meets other people who have similar challenges to her.
Ella was both with a heart defect called transposition of the great arteries. Though 9 heart surgeries before the age of 5, this young girl has to take lots of medication each day. Despite all this, Ella always has a smile for everyone. Being the 2018 Starlight Bear designer, she loved showing people ‘Sparkles’ and help raise awareness for the heart community.
Joshua has been diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and juvenile arthritis, meaning that every day he experiences pain and aching in his joints, hyper-mobility and has no idea when his joints might dislocate and cause him pain. After experience a Once In A Lifetime wish with Starlight, where he was completely pain free for a week, Joshua is making it his mission that all sick children can smile and feel the happiness he does with Starlight!
Tristan was diagnosed with DIPG at three years old – cancer of the brain stem, an almost non-survivable diagnosis. In his last months, Starlight granted Tristan his wish of playing the newest Pokémon game before its release, along with a whole truckload of toys. Tristan passed away in June 2018, but today, his parents fundraise for Starlight to both raise awareness and grant other children opportunities like this.
Sarah was first diagnosed with leukemia in October 2012. Despite numerous rounds of chemotherapy and radiation, she has unfortunately relapsed three times, fighting this illness again now for the fourth. Throughout her journey, Starlight has provided Sarah and her family with day trips and events that help them remember better days, and look forward to the next one coming up.
About Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada
Starlight Children’s Foundation® Canada does what no medicine can do: create priceless smiles and memories for seriously ill children and their families. For over 30 years, Starlight Canada has been spreading joy to sick kids across the country through a unique blend of hospital to home programs designed for the whole family. With your help, together we can create more magic in-hospital, grant more wishes out-of-hospital and spread more sparkles across Canada!