A 7-year-old Canadian boy who launched a lemonade stand to raise money for a sick friend has raised more than $50,000 — with a little help from his parents and social media.
Quinn Callender, of Maple Ridge, British Columbia, decided to start the lemonade stand after doctors recommended Brayden Grozdanich, who suffers from cerebral palsy, undergo a $20,000 surgery in the United States to help him walk.
"When I got home, I wanted to tell my mommy and daddy that I wanted to do a lemonade stand to help raise money to help him," Quinn told the CBC.
On Sunday, the boy and his parents built the stand out of cardboard and set up shop outside a grocery store, where the local fire department assisted with promotions.
Quinn's mom, Heather Roney, created an accompanying page for donations on the crowdfunding site YouCaring.com, posting her son's heartwarming solicitation letter:
Hi my name is Quinn, and this is my buddy Brayden. We are both 7 years old. We go to the same school and we are in Beaver Scouts together. Brayden has Cerebral Palsy, this makes it challenging for him to walk well because his muscles are very tight. Sometimes he can't keep up with the rest of the other Beavers and he falls down a lot. Brayden get's daily physio therapy to keep him walking. Sometimes it really hurts him. When I was at his physio, I tried to keep Brayden calm when he was in pain. My Mom told me Brayden is going to have a special surgery to help release the muscle tightness and spastic action. The surgery is not done here in Canada, only in the USA. Brayden and his Mom will be travelling there in August for the operation. Since the surgery is not done in Canada, Braydens Mom and Dad have to pay for it. The surgery will cost $20,000. Please help me raise money to help my friend Brayden, he is a really good guy.
Roney shared the link on her Facebook page. "I shared it, and my friends shared it, and it took off from there," she said.
So far, the site has raised more than $53,000 through more than 500 donations. According to Brayden's parents, the surgery for their son will cost about $20,000. According to Roney, all proceeds raised above that figure will be used to help Brayden's family pay for travel and physical therapy.
"In Canada, the surgery is more invasive than it is in New Jersey," Brayden's father, Travis Grozdanich, explained. "In New Jersey, there's the possibility he'll be walking out of the hospital that same day."
Brayden's procedure has been scheduled for August.