Over the years I’ve had the pleasure of sharing some inspiring moments and events. When the world was completely turned upside down (and continues to be) by the pandemic it helped me to stop and think about where my attention was and where it should be focused. And while this is my perspective and yours can be completely different, I’m proud to be sharing more about the things and people that make me happy. Like Barbie.
Yes, like Barbie.
Let’s rewind for a minute and go back to a young Daniel. I of course was a fabulous little boy and all I wanted was a Jem and the Holograms Barbie. So when I finally got one, I had never felt happier or more in love with a toy.
Flash forward to launching Do The Daniel, I was invited to a few events with Barbie and the Mattel team and I fell in love all over again. Now living my best 2SLGBTQIA+ life, I knew it was just a matter of time before I was inspired in a whole new way. Life during the pandemic helped me realize how important Barbie is to little ones today in 2021.
Over the years, the dolls quickly made it back onto my Best Toy Lists. Not to mention the importance of representation matters. I personally supported Barbie – via #BarbieFashionista dolls that I bought for Julio, or the #MoreRoleModels dolls that I bought for our future children. There is something so incredibly important in the diversification of this iconic toy and her circle of friends and I wanted to be a part of the evolution and change.
Most recently, Barbie decided to honour the heroes of the pandemic with the launch of #ThankYouHeroes which makes me so incredibly happy.
Not just that, but Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAT) announced that Barbie® will recognize six women who have worked tirelessly in the fight against COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Experts in their fields who have shown unprecedented courage during a challenging time, these six role models made a positive impact in their communities, inspiring current and future generations for years to come.
When I tell you that being made into a Barbie would be a career highlight, I’m not kidding. And I’m not anywhere close to a hero, so I can only imagine how honoured these women felt!!! And how amazing is it that a Canadian doctor made the list?
The global lineup of women honoured with a one-of-a-kind doll includes:
- Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa, MD (Canada)- A psychiatry resident at the University of Toronto, Canada, Dr. Oriuwa has advocated against systemic racism in healthcare, which has been further highlighted by the pandemic.
- Amy O’Sullivan, RN (United States) – Emergency Room nurse Amy O’Sullivan treated the first COVID-19 patient at the Wycoff Hospital in Brooklyn, NY. O’Sullivan later contracted the disease, and soon after returned to work to continue to help others.
- Dr. Audery Cruz (United States) – Dr. Cruz, a frontline worker from Las Vegas, NV, during the pandemic, joined forces with other Asian-American physicians to fight racial bias and discrimination.
- Professor Sarah Gilbert (United Kingdom) – As a Professor of vaccinology, Professor Gilbert led the development of the University of Oxford vaccine in the U.K.
- Dr. Jaqueline Goes de Jesus (Brazil) – As a biomedical researcher, Dr. Goes is credited for leading the sequencing of the genome of a COVID-19 variant in Brazil.
- Dr. Kirby White (Australia) – As a general practitioner in Australia, Dr. White co-founded Gowns for Doctors, a gown that could be laundered and re-used, allowing frontline workers in Victoria, AU to continue seeing patients during the pandemic.
While the six women are one time only dolls not for sale, Barbie continues to make a real difference in the world with their dolls and causes. It’s why almost ten years after launching the blog I continue to share with the same love and adoration I felt as a child.
For those of you also inspired, Barbie is also introducing the Fast Cast Clinic™ playset, with a Barbie doctor doll and four distinct play areas: a medical station, an exam table, an x-ray machine and a gift shop. The innovative new set includes dough that can be shaped to create leg/arm casts and create wraps with the bandage maker, allowing children to play out roles across the medical field. With dough containers to create casts, a set of crutches and over 30+ pieces, the Fast Cast Clinic playset is available at major retailers for $74.99.
To join on the social media conversation and buzz around this incredible idea, make sure to follow @Barbie on Twitter & Instagram. Share your thoughts and inspiring stories using the #ThankYouHeroes hashtag
Photos: Daniel Reyes & All Social Media accounts listed above
Don’t forget to be kind & laugh a little more this year