Tired of all the commercialism the holidays bring? Looking for a way to give a gift that matters? Consider the SickKids Get Better Gifts.
What is it?
An online catalogue of gifts that allows you to give a donation to The Hospital for Sick Children.
What a great way to check names off your list while helping almost 300 young patients who have to spend the holiday season away from home. This program is more than a gift catalogue—it allows you to provide sick children with the comforts of home at a time when they miss that the most. Get Bette gifts are the perfect choice for party hosts, teachers, caregivers, grandparents, or really anyone on your list. And this year, many of the gifts are matched, so you can easily find a gift that will have twice the impact on a child’s life.
How it works
Visit GetBetterGifts.com. Select a gift, make a donation, and pick a card to recognize the the gift that is then sent to your recipient.
Want to know your gifts help? Read about Hunter, 9, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL)
Hunter is very curious about the world around him and is always probing his parents, Sitara and Robin with tough questions. He is particularly interested in better understanding cancer, a disease that affects him and many of his peers at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids).
In October 2009, during the H1N1 outbreak, Josh, Hunter’s older brother, fell ill with the virus. When Hunter began acting irritable and fussy towards food, his mother thought he too had the H1N1 virus. Hunter’s paediatrician treated him, but Hunter’s odd behaviour continued, this time accompanied by a low-grade fever and weight loss.
In November 2009, Hunter and Josh had the chance to attend a Maple Leafs open practice. Hunter was exhausted by the time evening came. When his exhaustion didn’t let up the following day, his parents knew something was wrong. That evening, Hunter’s fever spiked and his parents rushed him to SickKids.
Doctors at SickKids diagnosed Hunter with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). He began aggressive chemotherapy treatment right away and was admitted to the hospital for nearly two weeks.
In February 2011, research led to a breakthrough in treatment for children with leukemia. Hunter’s protocol changed to a five month protocol and he was admitted for weeks at a time to receive more aggressive chemotherapy.
While Hunter was in and out of the hospital for treatment during the holiday season, he and his family experienced some of the extras SickKids provides during this time of year. He and his sister, Willow, met Santa for the first time and had their photo taken. They also spent plenty of time in Marnie’s Lounge where there were constant activities to lift kids’ spirits. They made ornaments and holiday crafts and Sitara vividly remembers the smell of treats baking, making her feel a little more at home.
In April 2013, Hunter’s family had a party to celebrate two big milestones – his sixth birthday and end of treatment.
Three years later, Hunter feels the side effects of treatment and visits various departments at SickKids regularly. He suffers from chronic pain. As a result, Hunter finds it challenging to fully participate in the same active activities as his peers and misses a significant amount of school.
Hunter still sees the positivity in his cancer journey. While he was sick he started to explore the arts as a form of therapy and still pursues them to this day. He enjoys painting and composing his own music, which distracts him from the pain. He says that maybe if he didn’t have cancer he wouldn’t know he likes doing these things.
Art & Crafts Supplies ($12)
Arts & Crafts programs can help children cope with hospital stays and ensures they get to do some of the activities they may be missing at school and home. The Art Therapy program at SickKids and encourage children to take their minds off treatments, surgeries and tests, so they can focus on just being a kid again.
Holiday Cooking & Baking Supplies ($20)
Our cooking and baking programs help sick children have fun and feel successful. With this gift of Holiday Cooking & Baking Supplies, you’re giving children the supplies they need to bake holiday treats and make the holiday season a little brighter. Child Life specialists know that maintaining familiar activities helps sick children feel just like any other kid.
Video Games & Controllers ($36 – match)
For those that can’t leave their bed, wireless controllers mean they can escape from their daily and sometimes difficult hospital routines. This year, the Orinoco Foundation will generously match* a selection of Get Better Gifts. Simply look for the matched tag online to find a present that will have twice the impact on children’s lives at SickKids. * up until December 31, 2016, gifts will be matched up to a maximum of $98K
Crib Mobile ($65)
Fun shapes, bright colours and soothing sounds can replace a sterile overhead view for a baby with something much more vibrant – a beautiful, spinning mobile. With this gift, you’ll help fund the Child Life programs at SickKids, including these important tools to calm our smallest patients.
Ready to purchase a gift that matters? I know I am. You can browse the full catalogue of gifts online at getbettergifts.com