The Brightside: Blessing families with baskets full of love

MILLSBORO, Del. – Providing families with a basket full of love. That’s what one Delaware family is doing with their new non-profit, Aliyah’s Cupboard.

Aliyah’s Cupboard is named after Aliyah Simms, a happy little girl who had loads of personality.

Gail Reid, Aliyah’s grandmother said, “She was a bouncy, twenty-two month old princess.”

Unfortunately, Aliyah was born with a range of medical issues that caused her to spend much of her short life in the hospital.

Kevin Simms, Aliyah’s father said, “She had underlying heart and lung diseases and she was also a club foot baby.”

Aliyah ended up passing away at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital at just 22 months old as a result.

Reid said, “It was pretty devastating for us of course, it was one of those moments that it just shakes you to your core.”

For months, Aliyah’s family was lost in their grief, but together they prayed for healing and that’s when the idea to start Aliyah’s Cupboard was born.

Reid said, “We wanted to service families who have children in the hospital who are dealing with a medical crisis.”

Throughout Aliyah’s life, the Simms had to be prepared to drop everything and go to the hospital.

Reid said, “When Aliyah was having a crisis, you know it was sort of a grab your coat and go moment.”

Oftentimes, the Simms family had no idea how long she would be in treatment.

“You don’t know if you’re going to spend the night, you don’t know if that medical crisis is going to last a week. Sometimes with ours, it lasted a month to two months,” Reid said.

Luckily for them AI Dupont, the hospital they typically went to, was able to take care of them if they forgot anything like deodorant or even tissues. So they wanted to provide that same service in Sussex County at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital.

Reid said, “So Aliyah’s cupboard is here to bring some relief to our families.”

This family now blesses others with baskets full of the essentials.

Reid said, “We include a toothbrush, toothpaste, body wash.”

They also include some extras in the baskets too.

“[There] is a personal note from Kevin, just a note of encouragement and of course inside of there is a gift card for the parents,” Reid said.

The goal of all of this is to make families realize they’re not alone. On top of that, this non-profit aims to help Aliyah’s memory live on.

Simms said, “We want people to realize even if shes not here with us shes looked out for us this whole way and shes continued to help other families and people and kids just like her.”

If you want to make a donation to Aliyah’s Cupboard, you can call them at 302-470-6192. They’re looking for donations of things like travel sized toiletries and monetary donations as well. Donations can also be dropped off or mailed to 29372 White street in Millsboro.

For more information, you can visit aliyahscupboard.wixsite.com

Categories: Brightside, Delaware, Local News