THIS WEEKEND, more than 210 seriously ill children and their families enjoyed a fun-filled day at an exclusive Christmas party at The Tower Hotel in London, thanks to Rays of Sunshine Children’s Charity.
Rays of Sunshine children’s charity was formed in 2003 to brighten the lives of seriously ill young people and their families across the UK by granting wishes and providing ongoing support in hospital and within the community. The charity’s work creates a positive distraction, reduces isolation, improves self-esteem and creates precious memories and smiles. The London Christmas Party, which is organised by a group of dedicated volunteers, is an annual event for seriously ill children and their families across the south of the UK.
From a creation station with build-a-bears, face painting, balloon making, biscuit decorating, nail art, a virtual reality experience, and even a disco to get the whole family dancing, the party was jam-packed and full of fun for the families. If this wasn’t enough, the children could also enjoy taking pictures in the fun photo booth, or eating lots of party food, including candy floss and popcorn.
There was also plenty of live entertainment on the day including a Stilt Walker, a magician and a Santa’s Grotto where children had the opportunity to tell Santa what they fancy for Christmas this year and take home a special gift, which were kindly donated by KidsOut.
This year Rays of Sunshine was extremely grateful to receive generous donations from companies across the UK, including Mars Wrigley Confectionary UK, Bunzl, Spinmaster and many more*.
Mandy Lee and Melissa Vandermolen, who coordinated the event with their team of volunteers, said: “The Christmas party is always the highlight of our year. It’s an amazing afternoon of fun and activities. For just a few hours the children and their families can forget about hospital and treatments and enjoy festive fun with their families. To see the smiles on all the children’s faces was so special. Huge thanks to all the Christmas party committee – Katie, Claudia, Jane, Jennifer, Louise and Mel who generously volunteered. Events like this can’t happen without support, so we would also like to thank all of the 90 volunteers who gave up their time to help make the day so special.”
Jane Sharpe, CEO of Rays of Sunshine, also commented:
“It’s amazing to be able to bring together so many of our wish families in London for this special festive party. You can see from the smiles on everyone’s faces just how much fun everyone had at the party. Every day of the year, Rays of Sunshine works hard to create precious memories and this Christmas party is no exception. A huge thanks must go to our Melissa, Mandy and our team of passionate and dedicated London based volunteers for putting on another magical event.”
*London Christmas party products and services donated by:
- KidsOut donated more than 500 gifts
- Spinmaster donated gifts
- Skinnydip donated gifts
- Bunzl donated gifts
- GoSkippy donated gifts
- Smyths Toys Superstores donated a £500 voucher to purchase gifts
- Co-op donated a £250 voucher to purchase items for the party
- Mars Wrigley Confectionary UK donated advent calendars and Malteser Reindeers
- Booker donated goodie food bags for children and water for the party
- Deutsche Bank employees volunteered time to wrap Christmas presents for children
- Salesforce employees volunteered time to wrap Christmas presents for children