By Jessica Mathews /

A Hartland Township teen and liver transplant survivor is continuing her holiday quest to collect toys for an area children’s hospital that saved her life on multiple occasions.

13-year-old Avery Brusseau was born with a rare liver disease, has underwent numerous surgeries and been in and out of Mott’s Children’s Hospital her whole life. Her mother Candace Brusseau says Avery got really sick at around age 8, was put on transplant list and thankfully, got her a second chance at life. Avery will be five years post-transplant December 1st.

Brusseau says Avery came up with an idea after her anniversary last year and wanted to be able to give back and she’s looking to collect 1,000 toys with community support. She says Avery is hoping to be able to drop them off on the anniversary of her transplant on December 1st and give back to the hospital that not only gave her a second chance at life but saved her life so many times.

Brusseau said the hospital is very special to Avery and their family and the Child Life Center/Room there has been a lifesaver and has every toy and activity imaginable. She said it really takes your mind off being in a hospital when you’re at a hospital – adding there are also specialists there who will play with kids or take them on walks around the hospital when their parents are mentally drained and emotionally exhausted.

Brusseau tells WHMI Avery has a heart of gold and they just want to show their appreciation and help give back to those who are in-patient right now - especially since they can’t share a lot of toys because of COVID protocols and need extra back-up ones while others are being cleaned and sanitized.

Brusseau said new, un-opened toys are being collected - basically anything that a newborn to an 18-year-old can enjoy. She said they really hope to make the toy collection a success, not only for Avery to meet her goal but to give back to the hospital that saved her life and to say thank you to those who have been there with them the entire time.

Avery is also a trampoline and tumbling athlete at Bounce in Hartland. Toys can be dropped off there through this Sunday, November 28th in order to make Avery’s anniversary goal.