Our Measurable Impact: A Snapshot

At Starlight Children’s Foundation® Canada, we are dedicated to making a tangible difference in the lives of Canadian families with chronically or critically ill children. Our unique blend of in-hospital and outpatient programs are designed to support the emotional well-being of these families, bringing joy and comfort during challenging times.

Supporting Families Nationwide

→ Over 750,000 Program Uses Annually: Our programs reach families in every province and territory, ensuring that no one feels alone in their medical journey.

→ 100+ Hospital Partnerships: We collaborate with 135 hospitals across Canada to provide essential resources for positive play and distraction directly to pediatric patients.

→ 2,000 Starlight Families: When children leave the hospital but continue to battle illness, we also offer outpatient support to around 2,000 families registered in our out-of-hospital programs.


Hospital Programs: Transforming Children’s Hospitalization

Scope of the problem:

 In Canada, around 500,000 children are hospitalized each year.

→ With children frequently experiencing fear and anxiety, 83% of our hospital partners have reported a lack of resources to address the mental health needs of their pediatric patients.

From gaming systems like our Starlight Fun Center® and Starlight Handhelds to activity kits such as Starlight Comfort KitsTM and Play From Hospital Shipments, our in-hospital programs provide distraction, relief, and fun for kids and teens who may be nervously awaiting treatment, recovering from surgery, or feeling lonely in their rooms.

Our in-hospital programs were collectively used more than 740,000 times in 2023.

98% of our hospital partners report that having a Starlight Gaming System benefits the mental health of their patients.

 Starlight Gaming Systems ease interactions with hospital staff by 95%.

→ 98% of pediatric patients who have used a Starlight Gaming System express a desire to use it again.

→ 95% of hospital staff noticed a positive change in behaviour in their pediatric patients. For example, reduced restlessness and anxiety.

→ 38% of hospital staff reported that at least one of their patients needed less sedation or other medication due to the positive distraction offered by a Starlight Gaming System.


Outpatient Programs: Spreading Joy Beyond the Hospital

Scope of the problem:

 Kids facing serious illness are often scared, anxious, sad, and alone.

 In Canada, youth living with chronic or critical health conditions are more likely to develop mental health issues.

Our Wish Granting programs are as unique and diverse as the 2,000 Starlight children we serve. Starlight Canada’s out-of-hospital programs fulfill wishes of all sizes, offering seriously ill children and their families ongoing opportunities to dream. Whether it’s wishing for a simple night out with our Starlight Day Brightener WishesTM, enjoying exciting events for new friendships through our Starlight Great Escapes® Wishes, or dreaming big with an extraordinary Starlight Once In A Lifetime Wish, we empower children, foster rare family bonding, alleviate stress, and enhance emotional support through a variety of new experiences.

Our outpatient programs were collectively used more than 18,000 times in 2023.

93% of Starlight families who received a Once In A Lifetime Wish said it was all they had hoped for–fostering hope, positivity and fulfillment during challenging times.


For a comprehensive overview of each of our programs and their uses, click here.

  • This information is gathered through continuous surveys and discussions conducted with our hospital partners and registered Starlight families. These ongoing engagements allow us to stay closely connected with the needs and experiences of both groups, ensuring that our programs are responsive and tailored to provide the greatest possible support and impact.