A Disney Wish

Charity Registration number: 295672 (England and Wales) and SC037479 (Scotland)

Throughout the past month we have been honoured to be a part of a magical collaboration with Make-A-Wish UK and The Walt Disney Company. Prior to the pandemic, The Kentown Wizard Foundation had planned to fund all the Disneyland Paris wishes being granted to children living in the UK. This was made impossible due to the many restrictions of the pandemic and meant that devastatingly, the wishes of hundreds of families were put on hold.

During those turbulent times we were extremely impressed by Make-A-Wish UK and their ability to adapt their services to continue delivering transformational wishes. It was from adapting to the restrictions of this pandemic that “A Disney Wish” was created. A project where hundreds of wish families who had their Disneyland Paris wish put on hold could now enjoy a unique, first-of-its-kind Disney Make-A-Wish experience in the UK.

Make-A-Wish along with The Walt Disney Company transformed the Elvetham hotel into an “Enchanted Manor”, over 140 youngsters and their families met their Disney favourites and took part in many exciting Disney activities. Families just like Ella’s whose wish was to meet her fairy godmother as she loves princesses, dressing up and all things Cinderella….

Sarah Ollerton, CFO of the Kentown Wizard Foundation was able to volunteer at the event and witness the happiness it brought. She said “I feel blessed to have been able to experience A Disney Wish first-hand. Seeing the smiles on children’s faces when they got their wish and watching families make once in a lifetime memories, really brought home why we do what we do. I can’t thank Disney and Make-A-Wish enough for making this vision a reality for these families. They were able to react at a moment’s notice to ensure no child’s wish or needs were unmet. Children could ask for anything and if it was within their power to do so, they would made it happen”

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Hope, Strength & Joy

Charity Registration number: 295672 (England and Wales) and SC037479 (Scotland)

Throughout 2020 we have continued our partnership with Make-A-Wish® UK . We made our first grant to this amazing charity in November 2016 and since then have funded the travel wishes of 235 seriously ill children.

Sadly, COVID-19 has temporarily derailed our ambitious four-year plan to fund all of the Disneyland Paris wishes granted by Make-A-Wish to children living in the UK. However, during these turbulent and uncertain times we have been extremely impressed by their determination to continue to deliver transformational wishes that bring hope, strength and joy.

Therefore, we are delighted to have made a further grant of £800,000 to Make-A-Wish to assist them in their quest to grant the wish of every child with a critical illness in the UK.

A wish just like Eric’s, who was born four weeks premature with a condition affecting his optic nerve and his pituitary gland. This has slowed Eric’s development and means he has little verbal communication, reduced mobility and blindness. He has seizures and takes 25 tablets a day. He struggled at school initially but thrived when he had the right support, winning awards for his confidence and abilities.

His mum Lynsey explained: “Having a child like Eric makes you appreciate the little things. It’s like planning to go to one place and then arriving at another. It may not be what you were expecting but we play the cards we are dealt. You learn to take in the moments in the everyday. We don’t have a bad life, but it is different.”

Eric’s nurse told him about Make-A-Wish and initially he chose to go on holiday in a caravan, but when isolation restrictions came into force, he had second thoughts and changed his wish to have an adapted bike. This meant his mum could pedal Eric around with him riding upfront. Despite the restrictions of lockdown, this was a wish the charity could deliver safely.

The benefits of Eric’s wish have been life-changing. The bike is an easier vehicle to manoeuvre than his wheelchair and he has gained local notoriety in his local community. Bus drivers beep at him, he’s been invited to a barbecue and been given free chips. Eric has even began sharing his bike with other people with similar needs so that they can too enjoy the freedom and independence it brings, paying it forward.

Lynsey said: “This has been the best gift he could have had. It has made our lives so much easier. He can experience so much more because of the bike and join in with everyone else. It isn’t just a bike. It has changed our lives.”


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Connie’s Wish Story

Charity Registration number: 295672 (England and Wales) and SC037479 (Scotland)

As our previous grant comes to an end we are delighted to announce that The Kentown Wizard Foundation will be continuing to support Make-A-Wish® UK throughout 2019. An additional grant of £250,000 will be gifted in order to fund the wishes of children living in the North of the UK who wish to visit Disneyland Paris. Children just like Connie.

Connie, aged 6 from Stockport, was born prematurely and had a cardiac arrest at just two days old. Following this, she has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, sight impairment, deafness and is tube-fed.

Disney songs and characters, especially Elsa from Frozen, are Connie’s favourite. She also loves fireworks, lights and sounds. Her serious illness means travelling away from home can be difficult, and not all attractions and theme parks are equipped for Connie to access rides. When Make-A-Wish UK gave Connie the chance to choose her One True Wish, it came as no surprise that a trip to Disneyland Paris was chosen.

In April 2018, Connie’s wish came true. Afterwards, Connie’s mother wrote a letter to her Wishgranter, Laura.

Hi Laura, 

First and foremost we would like to say a massive thank you for everything you have done for us. Connie’s wish truly was the trip of a lifetime.

As you know, we didn’t tell the girls about the trip. The day before we left, I secretly packed the cases while daddy took the girls to see their grandparents. It wasn’t until we were about a mile from the airport that my eldest, Caitlyn, realised. At which point the excitement trumped any sleepiness.

At the airport, I handed Caitlyn the wish pack explaining what was going to happen, so that she could read it to Connie. Their faces were priceless (although I don’t think Connie quite understood at this point). The flight was quite emotional as we didn’t ever think it would have been possible.

As soon as we started to see the signs for Disneyland there was a big buzz of excitement. As soon as the hotel staff saw we were on a Make-A-Wish trip he ushered us to a desk and summoned another staff member to check us in. She was amazing and made a really big effort with the children.

We finally arrived and I can safely say there is nothing quite like walking down Main Street and seeing the Disney Castle. So magical! We went on so many rides and met so many Disney characters.

The Genie pass was a real godsend. I thought that Connie’s disability might have limited her access to the rides, but she was able to ride the majority of them. Except for the big rides, she went on everything and enjoyed every single one.

From the rides we headed to the City Hall for our ‘treat’, while we waited a lovely staff member guided us around some nearby meet and greets, which made us feel like royalty. When it was time for the big treat, the girls were elated to be greeted by the REAL Anna and Elsa from Frozen. It was absolutely amazing (THANK YOU SO MUCH).

After this, we went to find the Wish Lounge to give Connie some relief from sitting in her chair and give medicines and her feed. It was nice to have somewhere quiet and private to go. Once finished, it was time to go to our princess lunch. Connie LOVED meeting the mice and feeling their squishy noses.

We stayed in the park until park closing time and watched the fireworks. The girls were all so good to last so long. We had the best time!

On the last day, we started in the Disneyland park, visiting the attractions we hadn’t made it to the previous day and finished off with the Walt Disney Studios. We had such an amazing time, words cannot describe the feeling it gave us watching Connie being treated like the princess she is. Never have we been away anywhere and it been so stress free. Connie was really well, she coped really well and the interaction was amazing. All of the kids had the best time and their faces say it all. THANK YOU so so much for arranging this all for us and giving us the chance of a lifetime. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.


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Cally’s Wish Story

Charity Registration number: 295672 (England and Wales) and SC037479 (Scotland)

Cally is 8 years old and lives with a profound hypoxic ischaemic brain injury. Her one true wish was to visit Disneyland with her family in the hope of meeting her favourite Frozen characters Elsa and Anna.

This wish was recently granted by the Make-A-Wish® UK, who not only sent Cally and her family to Disneyland but also set up a top secret meeting with her favourite characters Elsa and Anna.

Cally’s first day was spent filling up her autograph book and building snow Olaf with the other princesses.

Kate (Cally’s Mother):
“I’ve cried a lot with joy. I was getting to make the best memories ever with my girl with not one worry. It was like being in a movie. The meet and greet with Elsa and Anna was the best, I couldn’t help but tell Elsa that Cally had waited 4 years to see her.”

“I get butterflies thinking about being back at Disney and I cant thank everyone involved enough for making Cally’s wish come true. From the bottom of my heart. Thank you all so much. Special memories locked in our hearts.

We are always extremely grateful to receive updates like these from our partners and we look forward to posting many more throughout this journey


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Charity Registration number: 295672 (England and Wales) and SC037479 (Scotland)

Make-A-Wish® UK creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. To them a child’s life should not be about illness, hospitals and diagnosis – it should be about wonder, joy and hope.

Whether it’s starring in their own film, walking with dinosaurs, going on an amazing holiday, meeting a celebrity hero or having a bedroom makeover; each child’s wish is varied, personal and life-changing.

“I wish to go to Disneyland Paris” – Poppy aged 4 Hyperornithinemia (HHH Syndrome)

The effects these wishes can have on a seriously ill child and their family are endless, from creating incredible memories, building confidence and bringing happiness, to providing respite from the daily struggles that come with a critical illness.

In support of this incredible cause The Kentown Wizard Foundation have donated £450,000 to date. This will enable Make-A-Wish® UK to grant over 130 wishes over a 2 year period to seriously ill children whose one true wish is to visit Disneyland Paris.



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