Riley’s Birthday Project making one wish come true at a time

At five years old, Riley recognized her giving heart and wanted to put it to work.
At five years old, Riley recognized her giving heart and wanted to put it to work.
Updated: Sep. 30, 2022 at 5:00 PM CDT
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - It’s someone’s birthday every day, whether it’s yours, a loved ones, or a strangers. But, not everyone is always financially able to celebrate with a party, and when Riley Scott heard this news she knew she wanted to help change that.

At five years old, Riley recognized her giving heart and wanted to put it to work. She heard a real-life scenario that is many people’s reality while getting the guest list together for her 6th birthday party.

“I said ‘Can we invite them? Because I know they just had a birthday, and they didn’t even have a birthday party,’ and it just dumbfounded her,” Riley’s mother, Mandy Booth, said. “Like ‘Why did they not have a birthday party?’ And I told her not all mommies can afford you know plates and decorations and all that kind of stuff.”

It was news Riley didn’t want to accept.

“And she said, ‘Well we can’t have that, nobody can go without a birthday,’” Booth said.

So, Riley decided to put her birthday party on hold and instead host a birthday celebration where everyone brought toys to give to someone else.

“All of her presents were for other children and all of her money, if they gave her money, she took all of the money and bought decorations,” Booth said.

Riley’s birthday wish came true that year, and continues to since she started Riley’s Birthday Project.

“It makes me very happy so all the kids can be very, very happy just like me,” Riley said.

For over a year now she has helped more than 30 kids have the proper birthday party, which is icing on the cake.

Riley’s Birthday Project provides a bag of decorations, cake ingredients, and a toy for a child in need.

“Now when kids get their toys, they can play with them all day,” Riley said. “Like a little doll house, or Minnie or Mickey Mouse, even Hulk.”

Booth is also the director of the Preemie Project of Dothan, which is where Riley’s Birthday Project is also located. Riley’s said her mother’s hard work inspires her.

“I wanted to be just like her when I grow up,” Riley said.

This duo is unstoppable when it comes to helping their community.

“That excites me that she constantly wants to give and help and sees that when you help it makes a big difference,” Booth said.

If you need assistance with your child’s birthday, you can contact Booth at: (850)381-0224. You must present your child’s birth certificate a few weeks ahead of time to show proof. The cut off age is 12 years old, with few exceptions.

Riley’s Birthday Project accepts new and gently used toys.

To donate, you can reach out to Booth, or drop them off at the Preemie Project of Dothan. That address is: 961 Headland Ave, Dothan, AL 36303

“If you are out somewhere and they’ve got buy one get one and you know you’re going to save, you know just pick up an extra one because every little bit helps,” Booth said.

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