Ryan Reynolds launches Sweater Love holiday campaign for Toronto's SickKids
TORONTO -- Even with one sleeve not fully lit, it was an impressive sight as Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children kicked off its holiday fundraiser with help from Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds.
Reynolds began the Sweater Love campaign last year, raising more than $315,000 for the world renowned children’s health centre, while poking fun at his brightly coloured Christmas present-design sweater.
But, with COVID-19 limiting visitors and gatherings at the hospital this year, he worked with organizers to come up with a more pandemic-friendly plan.
Late this afternoon, the hospital flipped the switch to illuminate the 20-foot display, with one slight glitch. They plan to get the unlit sleeve fixed by tomorrow.
Reynolds also debuted a comedic video on Twitter, promoting the Sweater Love fundraiser, which is collecting money for patient services, as well as the hospital’s billion dollar new building.
In the video, the Deadpool star gets a helping hand from Toronto Maple Leaf Auston Matthews, sporting the same holiday sweater design.
SickKids patient Colm Bonfield says Reynolds has sent him a few personal messages of encouragement. But, even with all the positive support of others, he knows being in hospital over Christmas is just not the same.
“It’s really difficult to be in hospital over the holidays, and especially during COVID-19, now that there’s visitor restrictions and everybody’s got to social distance,” says the 11-year-old.
He faces surgery in a few days but is hoping he can get home before Christmas.
Reynolds is encouraging everyone to donate to the SickKids Foundation through FundTheFight/SweaterLove. The first $100,000 raised will be matched by corporate partner Samsung Canada.