It was an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for single mother of three when she received a special phone call from a Saskatoon businesswoman.
Chantal Moloney, owner of the eco-cleaning and home staging company Fresh Living, told Crystal Linka that not only had she been nominated for a special Christmas giveaway, she was also the winner.
'It means the world to us.' - Crystal Linka
"My heart soared," Linka said of the news.
Over the weekend, Moloney had put out a call over social media for nominations of single mothers struggling financially this holiday season. The woman selected would be given a little Christmas cheer in the form of a decorated tree with all the trimmings, and gifts for mom and her kids.
"There's a lot of moms out there struggling year-round," said Moloney. "At Christmas you start thinking about the people out there that have less than you."
Moloney said it was Linka's story that stuck out the most out of all of the nominations she received.
It has been a difficult December for Linka.
On Monday — the day she received the call from Moloney — her son Zander had received a preliminary diagnosis from doctors suggesting that he had a form of lymphoma cancer.
The 8-year-old had been bedridden in hospital for over a week.
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"You're just focused in the moment, focused on your child, and focused on what's to become of the situation," she said.
Her day brightened when she received the good news from Moloney.
"It means the world to us — to know that you live in such a big city but yet small enough to put a warm blanket on a situation that's hard," Linka said. "It's unreal."
Moloney said she has since reached out to hospital staff to see if they would be able to take Christmas to Zander.
"We're thinking maybe we can do some decorating in his room at the hospital if he's going to have to remain there."