Sunday, December 14, 2014

HGG2014: Gifts that Give Back: The Starlight Bear

Holiday 2014 sees the release of the 6th limited edition collectible Starlight Bear from the Starlight Children's Foundation Canada and Toys"R"Us Canada. I love that these bears are designed by Starlight children to raise funds for Starlight's in and out-of-hospital programs for seriously ill kids. I think this makes them an ideal gift for any kids on your list, as they provide a great opportunity to discuss how kids can give back in their communities to many causes. Kids feel a connection when another child is involved like this.

This year's Starlight Bear was designed by two brothers, Matteo (5) and Nico (3), who've named him Hiya. Both brothers 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. 

Nico and Matteo. Look at those sweet faces!
“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, which I think is pretty amazing.

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

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