Mado's Gift Foundation
I never actually met my sister Madeleine, she died before I was born, but she has made a lifetime of impressions on me. She was just a typical kid who had a great smile, loved to play and give hugs. But when she was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of three, it completely changed everything for my family, and eventually for me.
Cancer robbed me of the opportunity to meet my oldest sister and get to know her. It made me want to be someone better, someone who needs to help others, especially children.
Since I began my career as an artist, I have worked hard to honour her memory, by raising funds through donations of my art. As more groups began to ask for my help, I was beginning to lose my primary focus – to raise funds in Madeleine’s memory. I wasn’t seeing firsthand the impact I was making on people who needed my help.
Now I am refocussing my attention and energy to helping children with life threatening diseases –something that is close to my heart, since I have two young kids of my own.
Kids Helping Kids
The principle behind Mado’s Gift Foundation came to me when I was approached by two teachers to teach the young students about abstract art. We eventually decided to do a fundraising project. Each student painted a piece of abstract art, the paintings were sold and the funds raised went to a charity. The students enjoyed it so much, many of them have carried on, helping to create a new generation of abstract artists.
But what made this so special was that the kids were so excited to be helping other kids in need. I think I realized right there and then that this was how I could honour Madeleine – to raise funds to help kids who are facing life threatening diseases with gifts, or with money, whichever is more urgent.
The foundation’s name “Mado’s Gift,” is symbolic in many ways:
- The gift of creativity Madeleine gave to me and the need to help children.
- The gift Madeleine left us all by being with us, if only for a short while.
- The gift Madeleine’s memory will give to other children who need help.
How Mado’s Gift Works
- We will help kids in needs or kids living with life threatening illnesses by giving them gifts that will put a smile on their faces, or funding towards something that will help them.
- One of the main fundraising activities is to work with small groups, classes in schools or organizations to teach kids about abstract art, so that they may paint their own pieces and sell them to raise money for the Foundation.
- We also raise money with the many FUSION shows.
- We are a team of volunteers and at this point there are no administrative costs (no salaries) so all profit after expenses (art material) is giving back to the kids
- Gifts and funding will be made on a case-by-case basis. Applications are available (please send email to get one).
- Gifts and funding will start at $500 but can be bigger amounts depending on the family needs.
- We are working to turn the Fondation Le Cadeau de Mado / Mado’s Gift Foundation (a New Brunswick registered foundation) into a registered charity that can provide charitable receipts for tax purposes.