Toys that help change lives
Commitment to the community is integral to the mission of Learning Express Toys. Each year, LE Toys partners with several charities on both the national and individual store level. Franchise-wide, LE Toys worked with the MaxLove Project this year to help “SuperKids” thrive against cancer. Providing families fighting childhood cancers with accessible, practical, kid-friendly whole-body wellness, the MaxLove Project is 100% volunteer-powered.
“Giving back through fundraising and charitable programs is the very essence of who we are,” says Sharon DiMinico, LE Toys founder and CEO.
Leading up to the MaxLove International Loom-A-Thon Against Cancer on September 14, 2014, Learning Express Toys held various looming opportunities in stores throughout the country. Children helped Max fulfill his wish of creating a 100-mile Rainbow Loom chain. Additionally, stores sold MaxLove charms, with all proceeds benefiting the MaxLove Project.
“We are grateful to the Learning Express Toys family for being our partner in our mission to help children with cancer,” says Audra Wilford, Max’s mother and Chief Hope Officer of the nonprofit.
Max, a 7-year-old from Orange County, CA, is the inspiration for MaxLove Project. SuperMax, as he is widely known, is battling brain cancer. He became a YouTube sensation when he was featured on the Jimmy Kimmel show in February. Kimmel heard about Max’s love of Rainbow Loom and auctioned off his “Suit of the Loom,” with proceeds benefitting the MaxLove Project. Learning Express Toys of Mt. Lebanon submitted their loomed items to be a part of the Suit of the Loom and were spotlighted on one of the Kimmel episodes.
“Max’s story is incredibly compelling, and his passion for helping other children is heartwarming,” says Rick Derr, owner of Learning Express Toys of Lake Zurich (IL). “I am thrilled we worked as a team to help Max, and it was a pleasure joining him in Orange County for the Loom-A-Thon earlier this month.”
Author of the currently #1 best-selling craft book on Amazon, Suzanne Peterson, also attended the Loom-A-Thon. Peterson signed her book, The Loomatic’s Interactive Guide to Rainbow Loom. “Max has touched all of our hearts,” says Peterson who owns Learning Express Toys of Reno. Max and Rainbow Loom inventor Choon Ng sat side-by-side with Peterson and autographed postcards and shirts.
MaxLove Project also is supported by Cloud b, creators of the Twilight Turtle, which has provided great comfort to Max during his treatments. The world’s leading manufacturer of products that help children sleep, Cloud b items are sold at Learning Express Toys.