Racine dad and filmmaker Joey Papa believes with his whole heart that kids with special needs have a special place in the world, and he made a documentary celebrating these children in honor of his daughter, Canaan.

The movie will be available for a one-day only online viewing event July 9.

Canaan was born with a variety of disabilities that were never fully diagnosed, and she died last October. She never had the ability to speak, but her parents believe she spoke loud and clear with the joy she brought to their family.

To help give other kids like Canaan a bigger voice, Papa set out to make In the Land of Canaan celebrating families with special needs children.

“I spent so much of my energy seeking out a miracle for my daughter, till I realized she is the miracle,” Papa writes on the movie’s website.

He set up an indiegogo.com page to help raise the $50,000 he thought he’d need, and he reached $18,785 in donations from 147 people.

Papa recently made the film available for a one-day only online viewing event, but so many people contacted him about missing it, the movie will once again be available July 9 for one day only at inthelandofcanaan.com. Donors received a download of the film.

Papa is actively pursuing distribution to give the movie a wider audience and remind people of the special joy a child with special needs can bring to their families and the world.

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