Every girl deserves to be a princess. And on October 16th, over 100 kids got the royal treatment at the annual Princess for a Day event in Manitoba, Canada.
This was the 11th year of the sweet event, which was celebrated at the Manitoba Legislative Building, renamed “Castle Chavella” for the day. The “castle” held over 100 little princesses, including 60 girls with life-threatening or chronic illnesses.
The girls, ranging from 2 to 8 years old, were greeted with a brand new ball gown, tiara, and complete royal makeover. Many of their favorite Disney princesses were also there to show the little girls how to be a princess.
The annual event was started by Stella Mazza, who battled breast cancer in 2004 and absolutely loved giving her own daughter a princess dress.
“A profound realization occurred after watching my 3-year-old dancing and twirling in a princess ball gown I had purchased for her,” Mazza wrote on the event’s website. “I suddenly imagined countless little girls who are battling life-threatening illnesses, enjoying a moment like this.”
Thanks to Mazza’s work, the annual Princess for a Day event is a huge success. The day of royalty is completely supported by children’s charities and volunteers throughout Manitoba. She finds the little girls to invite by approaching the Dream Factory, Children’s Hospital, and Children’s Wish Foundation, who gives them a list of girls in need.
The handmade invitation is just the first keepsake that these girls receive, and on the day of the event, they get a beautiful princess gown to keep. Mazza says one of the best parts is that these girls get to use the gown to feel like a princess every day.
“Every year, and I know I’ll get it again this year, I receive pictures of the girls in their chemo room with the ball gown, because they get to keep it,” Mazza told CJOB News. “… So they’re going to their hospitals and doctor visits and chemo in their ball gown.”
Mazza also says that the event provides the opportunity for the girls battling chronic or life-threatening illnesses to interact and play with the other healthy girls, to give them a chance for some “normalcy.”
“When we set up the groups it’s intentional that we’ll encompass at least three or four of these families so that there is that normalcy,” Mazza said. And the healthy girls learn about what the other princesses are fighting right now, so it benefits both sides.
“The young children that are in the groups that are currently healthy … they’re experiencing this with these children, so that when they do these makeovers with, say, a girl that has no hair or another that’s got a feeding tube on her face, they’re going to be asking questions to their moms and dads.”
The goal of the event, which takes months to plan, is to give these girls the day of royal treatment that they deserve, and encourage their continued fight. “We are all there to give the positive energy we can to the children that are battling right now, and that’s why they’re here, so we can play with them and make them feel like a princess,” Mazza said.
Mazza is also working on establishing the Mazza Daydreamer Foundation to continue her efforts of helping these children throughout the year, and we know she’s going to do great things for all the princesses of the world.