January 22, 2021

How one woman allowed homeless children to dream again

Most people in the world are good. Yet most people in the world don’t know how to do good. We get so distracted and wrapped up in our own lives that we rarely have the time to help those that need it. Even if we do have the time we often sit and wonder what can one person possibly achieve on their own. If that sounds like you then we want to share the story of Paige Chenault. She found a simple way to make a big difference.

Paige was like one of the many people I have referred to, a good person. This good person was pregnant and sitting on a plane. She was daydreaming of the moment her child would arrive in the world, the moment of her birth and how that strange moment would turn into an occasion that they would celebrate with cake and music throughout her life. She pondered over the importance of birthdays and how we place such significance on this one day. She realized that birthdays are important. 

They allow someone to feel special, they are a marker in life. A book without chapters can become confusing, and birthdays provide an easy way to put a marker down and look back at what you have achieved in the past year. Paige decided in that very moment that she would give her daughter the greatest birthday parties she could. She would celebrate the day she gave birth and the individual chapters of her new daughter’s life with incredible glee.  

Then, she sat back for her flight and started to flick through a magazine. She saw a homeless child with nothing. She realized this poor boy would have a life that was a book with no chapters. He would never celebrate a birthday. As she walked off the plane and continued about her business in the passing moments of the next days and weeks, the picture stayed in her mind. The sad thought stayed with her. She decided to do something about. She wanted to find a way to give homeless children birthday parties.

The Birthday Party Project was soon launched. The idea was simple. Paige, a number of employees and a wealth of volunteers would host children’s parties in various shelters across the country. At present, she is active in 15 shelters. She hosts monthly birthday parties for children in the shelter and if it was your birthday that month you would get a cupcake, a $30 gift, and a placemat. The best moment for Paige is when the children blow out the candle on their cupcake and make a wish. 

Paige knows that these homeless children have tough lives and maybe a birthday is the least of their worries. But at that moment, on that day, they are allowed to be just children. They can have fun without concern. When they blow out the candle they can make a wish and dream. Something they likely don’t dare to do for many other days. 

Paige found a way to stop being a good person that did nothing. She is now a good person making a big impact. It all started with an idea. You have the power to do good too. While you may not think of your impact today or tomorrow keep your eyes and ears open for some way to do good in the world. You will be surprised how it comes to you. They say the secret to happiness is doing good for others. Today we spend so much time focusing on ourselves and we are no happier. If we just focused on each other a little bit more, the world would be a better place.