Just one week after fulfilling her dream of meeting Justin Bieber, 11-year-old Kiki lost her battle with kidney cancer last month. While we were at the Justin Bieber concert, Kiki shared with me that she didn’t want to receive gifts for Christmas but that she wished other children at Nemour’s du Pont Hospital. Although Kiki passed too soon to make the donation herself, her friends at Friends Are by Your Side made sure to deliver gifts and share her giving spirit with hospitalized patients.
Friends Are by Your Side is a charity that helps cancer patients with hair restoration, but we’re also committed to helping patients achieve all kinds of dreams— including Kiki’s dream of gifts for pediatric patients. We teamed up with our friends at Millennium Software for a toy drive that generated more than 4,000 toys in honor of Kiki’s wish.
On December 2, thirty people stopped by Martino Cartier Salon to organize toys ranging from Big Wheels and dolls to Kindles and Nintendo systems according to gender and age. My girlfriend signed each box of toys – about $120,000 worth in total – “Love Kiki.” We loaded the toys on an 18-wheeler generously donated by Campbell’s Express and delivered them to the hospital.
While Kiki’s story is inspirational, it’s not unusual. At Friends Are by Your Side, we see it every day from companies that donate their products to help cancer patients suffering from hair loss. As an industry, we are in a unique position to help others.
We’re still connecting toys in honor of Kiki’s legacy. If you’d like to make a donation for the toy drive visit, www.friendsarebyyourside.com.