The Ardene Foundation has touched the hearts of Starlight families and healthcare workers far and wide. In the outbreak of the pandemic, the Ardene Foundation donated hundreds of shoes to seriously ill children across the country. Each child received two pairs, one for them and one for a healthcare worker of their choice. Kids and teens across the country designed and personalized both shoes with provided markers and gifted the matching pair to a healthcare worker of their choice to thank them for their work.
We asked Starlight families to describe their chosen healthcare provider in one word. Today, we bring you brothers, 8-year-old Nicco and 12-year-old Matteo, and their “beauty” healthcare hero, Becky!
Brothers, Nicco and Matteo, were both diagnosed with cancer in their childhood; Nicco with pre-B acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and Matteo with bladder and prostate cancer.
For this family, social isolation has always been a part of their normal, even before COVID-19. With 2 immunocompromised boys and a mom who would do anything to protect them, they have always avoided overly public places like the grocery store. With many hospital visits and difficult treatments, Starlight Canada’s in-person events – where precautions are always put in place so that families feel safe even in the middle treatment – and school were the only places Nicco and Matteo really got to be kids.
Through all of this, one healthcare worker has been by their side supporting them for 6 years. Becky is a registered nurse at TiredSole™. She takes care of many oncology families and children like Nicco to fix damaged feet and hands from chemotherapy and radiation. She has also helped Matteo through treatment for neuropathy in his leg, which is the damage of nerves, as a result from all his chemotherapy.
As a teenager, Becky herself had cancer. “She knows all too well how vulnerable they are,” Nicco and Matteo’s mom, Lisa, shared. The brothers have a trusting connection with her, both personally and medically. When presented with the opportunity to thank a healthcare worker with hand-drawn shoes donated by the Ardene Foundation, Becky was the perfect fit for this family. They wanted her to know just how much she was appreciated.
Nicco designing the Ardene shoes for him and Becky!
“What an amazing act of sweetness, Becky leaves her shoes by her chair and wears them every shift, the patients love them,” Lisa shared. “It is an object that can be reusable and show pride, way to go Ardene.”
Becky and Nicco wearing their shoes together!
Hundreds of stories like Nicco’s and Matteo’s have been made possible because of the Ardene Foundation. During these challenging times for all of us, they have been working tirelessly to put the community first. Starlight Canada thanks you for your support on the front lines and in the homes of seriously ill children!
Click here to learn more about how they have given back during COVID-19.