Malakai* is a bright young First Nations teenager and was referred to the Stand As One Mentoring Program in early 2023. Spending most of his early life living with his mother and […]
Storytime gift from dad makes little girl’s day
Ivan* is a dad in custody. Despite coming up against obstacles, including being transferred twice, he had his heart set on completing a SHINE for Kids Storytime recording for his young daughter Ava*, knowing how much it would mean to her.
The power of a loved one’s voice can be incredibly comforting to children, especially when they are separated. And the special gift of a story from a parent reminds children that they are always loved and thought of, even when apart.
Ivan’s journey, however, wasn’t without its twists and turns.
He signed up for Storytime, but then, bad luck struck, and when the team came to meet him to begin the program, they discovered he had been transferred to a different centre. Ivan was disappointed, but he didn’t give up.
A few months later, when the opportunity came up again, he grabbed it. Our team, recognising his name and knowing that he’d missed out last time, took action and set to work making sure they could record his story as quickly as possible.
English being his second language, Ivan wanted to make sure he got the recording just right. He chose the beautiful storybook “I Love You Now and Forever” and asked for a few days to practice.
But the team knew that transfers could happen anytime, and they didn’t want Ava to miss out again, so they encouraged him to give it a shot right away.
With determination, Ivan and the team practised the story several times. They helped him over any stumbling blocks when he wasn’t sure of a word, and when he felt ready, they hit record.
Listening to his finished recording, Ivan couldn’t help but beam with pride – he had done it! He was so happy to have something special to show Ava how much he missed her.
Together they added a lovely message to the front of the book, and off it went!
When Ava received the book, she was beyond thrilled.
Her mother called our team to share her appreciation, saying, “Thank you so much! It’s beautiful, and I give it to my daughter every night … I appreciate so much what you have done for our family”.
Shortly after completing the recording, Ivan was transferred again, so we are so pleased that we could make this little dream come true for his daughter.
Please, support Storytime! This vital program means so much to our families. Donate today.
*names have been changed
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