Sep 27, 2023
Girl with goal of dropping off toys to Children's Hospitals in all 50 states
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — A seven-year-old rodeo queen from Montana is on a quest to deliver toys and games to Children’s Hospitals in all 50 states. This week she was at St. Joseph’s Children’s
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — A seven-year-old rodeo queen from Montana is on a quest to deliver toys and games to Children’s Hospitals in all 50 states.
This week she was at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital in Tampa.
Alayna Hutchings is a real old-west hero with a cowboy hat, boots and chaps.
She said the best part about dropping off the gifts is making the kids “feel really happy and not sad.”
From crayons to books to games, Alayna filled up an entire bin for the patients of St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital.
She knows all too well what these kids are going through; last year, Alayna found herself in Children’s Hospital in Montana, diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor.
“I was there for three weeks; I was so sad; I really wanted to go home because I missed my home,” said Hutchings. “I think that’s how kids feel, so I want to give them presents to make them feel much better.”
Alayna's future is still very much uncertain.
“There wasn’t anything they could do for it; they can’t biopsy to figure out exactly what kind of tumor it is, so like every six months we have to do CT scans, they measure the growth of it,” said Alayna.
Between all the hospital trips, Alayna continued to live her best life, and earlier this year, she was crowned Miss West Yellowstone 2023.
“As a parent, your goal and role is to teach your kids nothing is impossible in life,” said her dad Danny.
She hopes her story inspires the kids in the hospital. The rodeo queen has used her newfound stardom to raise more than $40,000 for kids like her.
“People gave me presents, so I’m going to give kids my presents,” said Alayna.
The goal is to deliver toys to children’s hospitals in all 50 states, starting right here in Tampa.
“We are utilizing them as a distraction from their hospitalization and to cheer them up during the day, keep them busy, keep them playing like kids should be,” said Brianna Wagner, a child life specialist with the hospital.
Next up for Alayna, she plans to visit Arizona, Colorado and Utah. If you want to learn more about Alyana and how to help with her fundraising efforts, click here.
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