A Day of Play

Every day, I run into some pretty incredible people. Some at work and that makes me happy because I get to see them every day.

And other people, such as our readers, lead me to some other inspiring people. One of them, Rayna, I heard about this week.

Honestly, how cute is this little girl? She was only with us for a short time – but her spirit has inspired her mom, family members and friends to create a day of play.


A subscriber, Leanne Thompson-Hill, sent us an email telling us about an event that is held yearly in the city of Saskatoon, called Rayna’s Day of Play, now in it’s third year. Leanne’s letter follows.

The background behind the event is a very sad one.

Rayna was a little girl from the Humboldt region, fighting cancer. I met her when we (my employees at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo and I) held a Tea Party  with Princesses at the hospital for her a few years ago when she could not go on her wish trip because of an infection. We followed her story on Facebook and really thought she would win this fight with an evil monster.

I was approached by the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada to hold a tea party to raise funds, and I agreed only if Rayna could be our Guest of Honour. Sadly, she was diagnosed again for the third time in January 2011 and this time it was terminal.

The tea party which Rayna could not attend was held on May 1st and she passed on May the 2nd.

Rayna’s mom, Cindy, has allowed us to expand the event in her daughter’s memory to a big street carnival, which raised over 38,000 dollars last year and is now called Rayna’s Day of Play. We’ve incorporated things that Rayna loved to do, including flying kites (kids get to make and fly kites), crafts and carnival games.

The event also features local entertainment, rides, a petting zoo, face painting and a Teddy Bear Clinic, which is run by the local nurses from the pediatric unit at the hospital.

This event is sponsored by local businesses in Saskatoon; this, year, the proceeds are going directly to the pediatric unit to fund things that they need for the kids on the ward. It’s held August 25th from noon to 4 p.m.

I really hope that you consider printing this as it also inspires others to have events like this in their city.

Thank you so much, Leanne Thompson-Hill, event organizer.

Editor’s note: Leanne, Rayna does inspire us, and so do you. It’s people like you that make a difference in our world.

How about you? How do you make a difference in your world?