Ontario teen Faith Dickinson receives invite to royal wedding
Dickinson received the Diana Award a year ago for her charity, Cuddles for Cancer, which sends warming blankets to cancer patients in numerous countries around the world.
She said that she received a phone call last Tuesday from the CEO of the Diana Awards in England, telling her that she was invited to the royal wedding.
“I dropped to the ground. I was like, ‘what?’ I was shaking after the phone call, I was just so overwhelmed,” Dickinson told Global News.
The 15-year-old girl from the Peterborough, Ont., area is planning on bringing her grandmother with her as a chaperone but her chaperone isn’t invited to the wedding, only Dickinson can attend.
“My granny, my mom’s mom, she was battling cancer last year, and she has relatives in Scotland, and since it was so close I was thinking of bringing her this year, since she’s all better now,” she said.
Dickinson’s royal hosts are paying for her and her chaperone’s flight to the U.K. and three nights at a London hotel.
Her parents are also tagging along and her mother, Carrie, will be watching the event in a pub close by, eating fish and chips.
“I have to wear a dress and a hat. A British hat,” Dickinson says of the formal dress code for the wedding.
On April 10, The Diana Award Twitter account tweeted about Dickinson’s invite to the royal wedding.
“Seven of the incredible young people we work with have been invited to the #RoyalWedding next month! One of them is Faith, who received her Legacy Award from HRH Prince Harry almost exactly a year ago,” the account tweeted.
Tessy Ojo, CEO of The Diana Award said, “These young people are absolutely thrilled to be invited to the wedding celebrations of Prince Harry and Ms. Markle. This gesture of kindness is one of the key values that we celebrate as part of Diana’s legacy and to see this demonstrated throughout the wedding preparation, is incredibly heartwarming.”
Ojo continued: “Prince Harry is a firm supporter of our work – particularly our mentoring program which plays a key role in the social mobility of hard to reach young people. We have worked closely with both HRH The Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry and we believe Ms. Markle will be a welcome role model for young people.”
Dickinson flew to St James’s Palace in London a year ago to receive her award for her charity, Cuddles for Cancer, at a special ceremony held at St. James Palace.
“At just nine years old, Faith launched the charity Cuddles for Cancer after her aunt was diagnosed with breast cancer. During her treatment, Faith’s aunt told her how she got very cold, so Faith made her a fleece blanket to provide comfort, warmth and love,” the Diana Awards program read.
“To date Faith has made over 3,000 blankets, which have been sent across Canada, the United States, U.K., Germany, Brazil, Australia, France and Africa. She has raised over $30,000 to ensure that the blankets remain free to those who need them the most. She believes that everyone ‘deserves a cuddle’ and personalizes each blanket based on the recipient’s hobbies or favourite colour,” the program entry continued.
“Most recently, her blankets have served soldiers returning home injured or suffering from PTSD. Faith is also an active member of her community as a volunteer and her ‘cuddle club’ talks have reached thousands of young people in schools across Ontario, encouraging students to fight social injustice in their local and global communities,” the program concluded.
During the ceremony, the princes spoke about the importance of continuing their mother’s legacy.
“This summer marks 20 years since my mother died, and she achieved so much in her life,” said the Duke of Cambridge as he addressed the audience. “From helping to shatter the stigma around AIDS, to fighting to ban landmines and supporting the homeless — she touched the lives of millions.”
Prince Harry and Markle are asking for charitable donations in lieu of wedding gifts at their royal wedding on May 19.
Video interview by Sarah DeethFollow @KatieScottNews
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