Doing something sweet for SickKids

Author: Alicia Erz


Zachary is not your average 16-year-old. He enjoys sports, playing hockey and watching movies. And he LOVES the Toronto Maple Leafs. But Zachary does something a bit different in his spare time. He raises money for SickKids.


Zachary is the founder of Do Something Sweet, a fundraising initiative that has, to date, raised more than $82,000 in support of SickKids. Do Something Sweet was inspired by his younger sister, Maya, who was treated at SickKids for Kawasaki disease at six-weeks-old. It was a scary moment for the entire family, but one that also motivated Zachary to find a way to help other children who were sick in hospital. He just needed to decide what that would be.


Coming up with the idea to fundraise was the easy part for Zachary. The hard part was figuring out exactly what he wanted to do to fundraise. After bouncing some ideas around, he came up with an idea. “I thought maybe we could use my father’s cotton candy machine because every child loves cotton candy.” And that is when Do Something Sweet was established.

"No matter how much money you raise, you are doing the right thing for the hospital."


The 8th annual Do Something Sweet event was hosted on Sunday, November 2 on the driveway of his house and the driveways of a few neighbours. More than 400 supporters came out to enjoy face painting, inflatable games, a silent auction, balloon animals and, of course, cotton candy. For Zachary, the event “gives people the chance to have a lot of fun while at the same time doing something important for sick children.”

Zachary’s fundraising efforts have not gone unnoticed. Zachary was the recipient of the Junior Citizen of the Year award in 2009, presented to him by the Premier of Ontario and the Lieutenant Governor. And for the past two years, Zachary has been acknowledged through the Kids Believe in SickKids (KBSK) program with the Top Fundraising Individual award at the annual KBSK Awards. 


Why does Zachary think that fundraising for SickKids is so important? “I want to do my part in helping the kids in the hospital as much as possible. Some kids are there for a day, some a week and some for months at a time. I want to be able to make their time in the hospital a more pleasant environment and hope they get better quickly.”


And for those kids out there who might be thinking of hosting their own fundraiser for SickKids, Zachary has this advice: “Follow your dream and set a goal. No matter how much money you raise, you are doing the right thing for the hospital. You will be surprised at how so many people will come together for this wonderful cause.”


Thank you Zachary for being a #SickKidsHero!