CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Many of us think of the holidays as the season of giving, but the need for help extends well beyond December; especially when it comes to kids living in poverty or without a home. Imagine how being homeless can impact a kid if it’s also their birthday. News10’s Anya Tucker spoke with a local business owner who is making birthdays special for kids, no matter what their circumstances might be.

As an event planner, Christine Wheat knows how to bring shine and sparkle to anyone’s special day. It was about nine years ago, when the successful business owner of Christine Wheat Special Events based in Saratoga Springs decided she wanted to give back to her community, combining her passion for parties and helping children who are facing poverty and homelessness.

That’s when she started Cake, Candles and Confetti. Thanks to generous donors and a small army of volunteers, the charity ensures that kids in need have a celebration on their birthdays. “The coolest, I think reaction, is that people don’t believe it’s all for them. You know, ‘Maybe I’m getting one gift, or something.’ And it’s bags and bags of gifts and a cake and goody bags, and I think it shows them in this world, in their cycle that they are in, that they have somebody who supports them. And somebody that cares about their future,” said “Wheat.

“It’s just about pure joy,” said Liz Hitt, the Executive Director for the Homeless and Travelers Aid Society in Albany. Hitt helps connect client families with “Cake, Candles and Confetti”, not just for birthdays but also for the holidays. “Often times when you’re homeless or you are low-income, you may be handed something, but it might not be personal. She works very hard, her and her team, to personalize every gift,” added Hitt.

“The littlest things make a difference,” said Wheat. “And of course, then I want to add in toys and fun activities and candy and all that stuff that we got when we were little. So yeah, it’s a big deal.” Christine wished to remind everyone that giving doesn’t necessarily have to be an investment of money or lots of time. She says we can all give in small ways that add up to a lot. She is hoping that 2023 will be a year of giving.

Click here to find out more about “Cake, Candles and Confetti” and how you can help brighten the birthday of a child in need.