The Ahuja family of Abbotsford host their fifth annual Share a Smile fundraiser on March 17 in Surrey. Pictured are dad Gary, mom Karm and kids Maya and Danny. (Garrett James photo)

Abbotsford family holds fifth annual Children’s Hospital fundraiser

Share a Smile event takes place March 17 in Surrey

An Abbotsford family is holding an event in Surrey on Saturday, March 17 to raise funds for BC Children’s Hospital.

Gary and Karm Ahuja are hosting the fifth annual “Share a Smile” event at the Royal King Palace (#365 – 8158 128 St.), starting at 6 p.m.

The event includes a full buffet Indian dinner, entertainment, games, face painters, a photo booth, raffle prizes, a silent auction, and a performance by Vancouver Breakdancers.

In 2013, the Ahujas set a goal to raise $100,000 over the next several years to purchase medical equipment as a measure of thanks for the care their daughter Maya received as a baby.

They expected to take up to 15 years to reach that amount, but they will surpass it at this year’s dinner – their final one.

Maya, who turns eight in June, underwent open-heart surgery in 2010 at the age of four months. Following the procedure, her heart stopped beating for 22 minutes, but quick action by doctors and nurses saved her life.

Maya will require another open-heart surgery in the coming years and is closely followed several times a year by the doctors at the hospital.

Tickets for Share a Smile are $50 for adults, $30 for ages 13 to 17, and free for kids 12 and under. They are available by emailing garyahuja@hotmail.com or calling 604-613-5242. Tickets will not be available at the door.

More information is available online at teammiraclemaya.com.

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