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Today is International Friendship Day and what a beautiful thing to celebrate! Friendship is very important to us here at Rays of Sunshine because without it we couldn’t grant our magical wishes.

We are very fortunate to have lots of people who are always willing to help us in our goal of granting wishes for those most deserving of them.

Therefore this post is dedicated to all the lovely organisations who give us a helping hand in the work we do – all of who we hugely appreciate.

Here are a few examples of how our friends have assisted us:

Merlin’s Magical Wand

Thanks to one of our oldest friends, Merlin’s Magical Wand, we are able to send our wish children to some of the UK’s top attractions including LEGOLAND, SEA Life Centres and Madame Tussauds.

Merlin’s Magical Wand is a worldwide charity for children and they have arranged magical days out for over 377,000 children to date.

Rays of Sunshine has been working closely with MMW for over 10 years. In this time they have helped no end in granting many magical wishes at these fabulous attractions.

Roman, 7, enjoying his time at LEGOLAND

My 1st Years

From one of our oldest friends to one of our newest! We are delighted to work together with well-known baby brand My 1st Years.

Our friendship may only be three months young but they have already started to spread the magic and love by sending a personalised gift to every child fulfilling a wish with Rays of Sunshine this year.

Wish child, Georgiana, with her My 1st Years teddy bear. “Receiving the bear was a big surprise! We weren’t expecting it at all. It was addressed to Georgiana so we let her open it and her face lit up. She was so happy and it really was the icing on the cake for our whole wish experience. Georgiana takes her bear with her to bed every night.” said her Mum, Rebecca.

 

They will also be helping us to grant even more wishes by donating £1 from the sale of every item in their new ‘Hello Sunshine’ range. Staff based at My 1st Years’ production facility and head office are also going to be taking on a range of challenges throughout the year to raise even more money! Amazing.

Playtonic Games

Some friends have a nice way of surprising you and the guys at Video Game Developers, Playtonic Games did just that for Sam. His dream was to meet game creators and to help design part of a real video game.

This month Playtonic Games invited Sam to their headquarters and gave him the full behind the scenes experience. He was treated to a real insiders’ view of characters being sketched, whatever he wanted for lunch (chicken nuggets of course!), as well as the opportunity to record his voice for it to feature in one of their next releases.

15-year-old, Sam, on his day at Playtonic Games recently.

The Beach at Brent Cross

This month, we were delighted to invite our wish families to the VIP Launch of our friend, The Beach at Brent Cross, before it opened its doors to the public.

Our families got to enjoy exclusive access to London’s largest city beach experience at Brent Cross shopping centre and all the entertainment on offer, including the daring Thriller Coaster to the feel good Merry Go Round, all to celebrate the second year of our fantastic partnership.

Brent Cross and The Beach will be supporting the charity through various events held throughout the summer, as well as donating all money from the iconic Brent Cross Fountain to help grant magical wishes for seriously ill children.

View photos from the event here.

Hoo Farm Animal Kingdom

There are some friends who go the extra mile to be kind and think of others. Hoo Farm Animal Kingdom certainly did that for young Tyler when they pulled out all the stops to help him become a keeper for the day.

This experience is normally a group activity but to make Tyler’s wish extra special he got to perform the role all by himself. Hoo Farm Animal Kingdom donated the whole day for free, for which we are eternally grateful.

Essex Limos

Finally, we all have those friends who you can always rely on and that can definitely be said of Essex Limos, especially when it comes to providing our wish children with the VIP treatment on the day of their wish.

Essex Limos always provide first class service and make sure our wish children arrive in style and comfort.

Oliver, 4, and his brother, travelling to his wish in style dressed up as superheroes.

 

Thank you to all of our friends, those mentioned above and the hundreds of others working tirelessly in the background. Without you the Rays of Sunshine family would not be the same.