This Woman Launched A Project Which Organizes Birthday Parties For Homeless Kids

Meet Paige Chenault, the 23rd woman who was named the “Mother of Invention” by automaker company Toyota and received a grant of $50,000 in 2018.  And the reason behind the grant and award is truly heart-melting.

Chenault, who has a background in party planning, launched The Birthday Party Project six years ago, which is an organization that plans and throws birthday parties for homeless children across the US.

Yes, she literally throws birthday parties for homeless kids.

 

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The idea behind the project came to her in 2008, she told Women In The World, in a plane ride. She was pregnant at the time and reading about birthday planning. But then she came across an article about kids in Haiti and the images of the kids standing amid the rubbles of their own home deeply moved her. “I could not shake this idea that I was given so much. How could I give back?” she told the magazine.

 

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So, after talking it out with her husband, she decided she wanted to help the kids in her own town, so she did. After a while, in 2012, she partnered with a local homeless shelter and started visiting it once a month. She would bring a cake, party decorations, activities, and treats and the kids there would just have fun and experience the feeling of an actual birthday party.

Innitially, her project was all made possible from the donations by people who witnessed it and immediately took it close to their hearts.

 

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Paige, according to the official The Birthday Party Project (TBPP) website is not only the organization’s CEO, she is also the “chief enthusiast”. But in addition to her, there are now a number of coordinators, who with the help of hundreds of volunteers around the US, are still helping organize birthday parties for homeless kids. But now it’s done on a much larger scale than she initially started.

 

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Among the places they operate in are Los Angeles, Austin, Kansas City, Chicago, Minneapolis, San Francisco, Detroit, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and New York City. They also have allies in the many companies who want to help them make some kids’ birthdays a little brighter.

 

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TBPP have so far thrown over 7,000 birthday parties for 42,000 kids. Their statistics go on to include the cupcakes eaten (55,000), glowsticks cracked (36,000), renditions of “Happy Birthday” (1,500) and the smiles shared (countless!).

 

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Chenault shared a heartbreaking story about a little girl who had never had a birthday celebration and didn’t even know what to do with the candles on her cake. After she was told she had to blow them, she then approached her tearful mother and told her, “Mommy, they had me blow out a fire stick.”

 

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“We bring joy and magic to children experiencing homelessness,” Chenault said. “We often say that our parties are so much more than a celebration … They are a loud exclamation point that children matter.”

And last year, the 37-year-old party planner and her organization were awarded a grant of $50,000 by Toyota, as part of their Mother of Invention program, with which they have granted over $1 million to entrepreneurs since its launch in 2012.

 

See Also: 12+ Heartwarming Pictures Showing True Love – And Not Only The Romantic Kind