Who You Help

Welcome to the Starlight Storybook, where you can read real-life stories of children and families telling how our in-hospital and out-of-hospital programs have brought happiness and joy back to their lives. Do you have a story to share? Click here to share your Starlight story

Hunter’s Story

Hunter is a brave little boy with shoulder-length red ringlets who enchants all who meet him. This five year old may have been battling Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia for more than half his life, but that hasn’t taken the twinkle out of his eyes or made his smile any less mischievous! Like any sibling, Hunter simultaneously dotes on and teases his younger sister and adores his older brother.

Sitara, Hunter’s mother, appreciates Starlight especially because we give opportunities for the family to come together. They have attended several of our Escapes and Day Brightener events, where for an afternoon or even a whole day, they relax and focus on having fun. From sailing on Lake Ontario to picnics in the park and tickets to a game, Hunter has enjoyed the exciting experience of being a kid. Keep smiling Hunter!


Aleisha’s Story

Aleisha is Canada’s youngest known survivor of breast cancer. Although she underwent a mastectomy at three years of age, this brave little girl is still a dreamer who loves talking, giggling, and the musical Cats. For her sixth birthday, Starlight sent her and her family on a magical trip to Niagara Falls where they went on a private tour of the Butterfly Conservatory and witnessed a butterfly release. Currently free from treatments, the adventure allowed Aleisha and her family to relax and celebrate being a kid. Aleisha, who loves being the centre of attention, brightens the day of anyone who meets her.

“We want to thank you for making Aleisha’s birthday – and year – such a special one.” – Melanie, Aleisha’s mom


Trev’s Story

Trev was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in 2011 when he was seven years old, and after intensive treatment he is now considered in remission. This determined fourth-grader works hard to stay up-to-date in school, and is equally dedicated to playing sports and having fun. His mother remembers the stress of that first night when Trev was diagnosed and admitted. A Starlight Fun Center was brought to him and despite IV’s and splints in both hands — and much to the relief of his parents, he managed to play games and forget about the treatment he faced. The Starlight Fun Centerallowed him to stay positive – an attitude that his mom says that lasted through his entire treatment. Since then, Trev and his family have been welcomed into the Starlight Escapes Program. So far, they have enjoyed a day at Calypso Park and Karter’s Korners, the Shrine circus, and even a special screening of The Lorax – and more fun is to come!

Those moments when some happiness is brought to your child are huge” said his mom Charlene. “It gave us strength to see him smile.”– Charlene, Trev’s mom


Stephanie’s Story

This spirited ten year old girl is Stephanie. She is quick to smile, eager to help others, and like many kids, would love it if a robot were invented to do her chores for her. Spending her life in pain and in and out of hospital for intestinal failure may be a part of Stephanie’s childhood routine, but she doesn’t let that stop her from skiing and running at her school’s cross country team when she can. Stephanie joined our Starlight Escapes program because she wanted her family to spend more time together outside of the hospital and to bring them closer together. She is an extraordinary girl. In October of 2012, she was nominated as the Toronto Walk for Smiles ambassador and, as she told her story, brought together not only her mother, father, and two sisters, but hundreds of participants who attended the five kilometre Starlight fundraising walk. When asked why she wanted to be the ambassador, she said she wanted to help raise funds for Starlight so that other families could benefit from the program, just like her. Thank you for being so inspiring Stephanie!

We will never, ever stop supporting Starlight. It’s really changed our world.” -Stephanie

Starlight Escapes allow us all to go and enjoy life for what it really is and to leave the sick behind.” – Denise, Stephanie’s mom


Siobhan’s Story

Siobhan, diagnosed with Marfan syndrome and scoliosis, is a lovely, active young lady. This lively thirteen year-old plays on an under-14 soccer team with many of her friends, and enjoys swimming in the summer and skiing in the winter. She also loves to play drums in her school band and takes lessons to improve her music. Siobhan really likes playing with younger kids and despite all of the activities she participates in, she finds the time to babysit regularly. Starlight has been able to help Siobhan by sending her to concerts and professional soccer and hockey games (she even met David Beckham!) and has invited her on many of our Escapes programs. In a speech she made as the 2012 Vancouver Walk for Smiles ambassador, Siobhan’s determination to help give back to Starlight is because, as she said, “Starlight has made mine and many others life a bit easier.” It comes as no surprise, then, that her giving nature doesn’t stop there—when she grows up, this impressive teen wants to become a children’s nurse! You are remarkable Siobhan!

Ryan’s Story

Ryan is a smiling, cheerful, nine-year old boy, who, due to a hypoglycemic attack and a subsequent three-week coma at the age of four, has suffered extensive brain damage and cannot walk or talk. Despite this, Ryan’s remarkably lovely personality and kind and loveable nature shines through to anyone who meets him. He is surrounded by a wonderful, tightly-knit family who bundle him with love and support, and there is nothing he enjoys more than camping with them in their family RV—except perhaps his role as captain of his Clarington Toro’s boys’ hockey team! Ryan’s favourite sport is hockey, followed closely by football. Starlight has been able to bring some joy to Ryan and his wonderful family by sending them to various Escapes and Day Brighteners, including sports (from NASCAR to hockey and basketball) games, a Justin Bieber concert, and even a family fishing day! In 2012, as a way of thanking Starlight, Ryan’s eleven-year old sister raised over $8,100 by making and selling bracelets she called, “Ryan’s Smiles”. Starlight is so lucky to be helping such an inspiring family!


Maggie’s Story

As part of our In-Hospital programs, Starlight provides Emergency Room Admit kits (filled with things like toys to keep kids occupied and toiletries for parents) to hospitals across Canada. Recently, one Mom blogged about spending the day in the Emergency room with her toddler and the huge impact our Starlight kits had on the experience. Rachel writes “It turned my cranky, sick baby back into a happy, playing baby. Because, when your child is sick, sometimes you focus so much on the illness that as parents, we forget about PLAY. That someone though about fun is a blessing that I will never be able to fully express. The joy in seeing a smile on her chubby little face made me forget about the doctors, needles , and the IV – helped us both forget, for a few moments at least, that she was even sick.”

You can bring back the pure joy of being a kid to a Starlight child – click here to donate today.
Click here to share your Starlight story.


Starlight Children’s Foundation Canada
1805 Transcanada,
Dorval, QC H9P 1J1
(P) 1-888-782-7947
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Charitable Registration#: 13129 5693RR0001