World Wish Day established on April 29, 2010, was celebrated by The Walt Disney Company and Make-A-Wish Foundation this past weekend. April 29 marks the very first inspirational wish that led to the founding of Make-A-Wish International in 1980. Make-A-Wish has granted more than 550,000 wishes all over the world, with just 27,000 taking place last year.
The Walt Disney Company alone is responsible for 150,000 of those granted wishes, making them the “biggest wish granter” for Make-A-Wish Children. Disney Parks make dreams come true for Make-A-Wish children every day, but to celebrate the Wish holiday, Parks all over the globe had dedicated celebrations.
Disney’s 150,000th Wish Celebrated at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida
16-year-old Mikayla from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. received the 150,000th Disney-inspired wish on Saturday. She has been battling cancer for about three years. First, she and her family were the Grand Marshalls at Magic Kingdom’s Festival of Fantasy Parade, leading the floats in a horse-drawn carriage and waving to Guests along the route.
They were treated to a surprise stay inside the exclusive Cinderella Castle suite in the center of the Park. Disney reports that Mikayla is also an aspiring singer! The Park will assist with her dream of performing at Disney World, by scheduling a “royal performance” this summer!
Here’s what Mikayla’s mother had to say:
We are so thrilled that Mikayla is able to have this opportunity to celebrate the journey that she’s been on. You never anticipate [your children] are going to experience a life-threatening situation, but it’s been amazing to see how much good can come from something bad. We get to create these wonderful new memories together and not focus on the ones that maybe weren’t so pretty.
How Other Disney Parks Are Celebrating the Make-A-Wish Holiday
Disneyland Paris celebrated with 89 Make-A-Wish children who attended the world premiere of Marvel Studios’ high anticipated film Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. The kids were able to meet the stars of the movie, Chris Pratt who plays Star-Lord and Zoe Saldana who plays Gamora. The kids also got to walk the orange carpet!
Disneyland Resort in California dedicated three windows along Main Street USA to the Make-A-Wish children all over the world. Chairman of Disney Parks Experiences and Products, Josh D’Amaro’s message for Wish kids is, “We celebrate you. We honor you. We are so fortunate to spend time with you and your families.”
The Value of Disney Parks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation
Leslie Motter, Make-A-Wish America President and CEO, describes the important partnership Make-A-Wish has with the Walt Disney Company.
This is an incredible milestone moment in our more than 40-year relationship with Disney. We know that wishes have the transformative power to renew hope, uplift spirits and unite families. When you pair that with Disney stories, characters and experiences, lives are forever changed thanks to the unmatched joy that’s delivered when it’s needed most.
Watch the full report on ABC’s Good Morning America.
— Good Morning America (@GMA) May 1, 2023