TIME TO SPARKLE: Youngsters And Their Famous Friends Jet Off To DISNEYLAND PARIS to Celebrate the 25th Anniversary
Forty deserving youngsters found time to sparkle as they jetted off with British Airways from London City Airport this morning to join in the 25th anniversary celebrations at Disneyland Paris.
The children and adults from three London charities were joined by some famous friends including Alesha Dixon, Stacey Solomon, Joe Swash, Louie Spence and TOWIE’s Lydia Bright, for the magical day out.
This is the fourth year that British Airways and Disneyland Paris have teamed up to organise a day trip direct from the Docklands and this year it was children from Body and Soul, Fight for Peace and Oasis Children’s Venture who joined the fun.
All three charities are supported by Flying Start, British Airways’ global charity partnership with Comic Relief. Since the partnership began in 2010 the airline has raised more than £14.5 million to help sick and disadvantaged children around the world.
Today’s special passengers flew to Paris on the private flight for the day in Disneyland Paris where they will have a personal meet and greet with some of the characters, including Mickey Mouse, enjoy lunch with the stars then spend the afternoon on the attractions before flying home tonight.
They will also be able to enjoy Disney Stars on Parade, a brand new parade to celebrate the park’s 25th anniversary, and two new shows The Starlit Princess Waltz and Mickey presents Happy Anniversary Disneyland Paris.
Community outreach and charitable giving has been a priority activity for Disneyland Paris since the resort opened in 1992. Disney magic is shared through the Disney VoluntEARS programme, whereby employees donate their time and talents to others through outreach events. In total, 1,123 Disney VoluntEARS gave over 15,274 hours to community service in 2016. The same year, Disneyland Paris offered its support to more than 300 different European associations, with over 1,000 community outreach events organised and supported every year including onsite day events, wishes granted to children, and visits to medical centers.
Alesha Dixon said “It’s absolutely amazing being at Disneyland Paris – seeing everyone’s faces and everyone is so excited to be here and there is something really genuine about it. I can’t believe it has been 25 years – where has the time gone- they have gone from strength to strength and it feels good being here as it is such a special place. Places like this and days like this are rare for people, so for them to come here and have an amazing day out and just forget about all the cares in the world and just enjoy themselves is lovely
The charities are incredible and the children that I have met so far have been so sweet. I’m so happy for them for a lot of them it is their first time –they are going through certain things in their life that and the fact that they get to come here and have fun and let go of all of that and just be kids is lovely and it has been a real pleasure to meet all of them.
Disneyland Paris just reminds me of just being a child where the world is innocent and there is something really pure about it. And I think children should believe in magic for as long as they possibly become before they grow and up and become an adult.”
Stacey Solomon adds “So lovely being here at Disneyland Paris – it’s such a magical place and with all the lovely children as well – it’s just a really lovely experience.
I think coming to Disneyland Paris with a group of children from different children’s charities is great - gives you such a wonderful feeling
I can believe Disneyland Paris is 25 years old – I have been here every year since it opened.
Disneyland Paris to me means family – watching family films, Mary Poppins. SS – it’s a place to escape – I use DLP as my safe place so if I’m ever feeling worried or nervous – I always stick on a movie.
I did have a bit of sing song of Be Our Guest from Beauty & Beast on the plane.”
Joe Swash said “I mean it’s different like – it’s lovely coming back with all the kids – it’s lovely day and how exciting all the kids gets
It’s amazing bringing the kids from local charities – you get a sense of excitement off of them – it kinds of bleeds into us lot.”
Louie Spence said “It’s fantastic - we have come here with all these wonderful people and we are going to have fun.
I can’t believe Disneyland Paris is 25 years old because I must have been about two when this was just created – so yes times just flies with me being just 27
It’s fantastic being here with the children from local charities – I mean some of them it is their first trip abroad and what a treat to come to such a fun day out – it’s such a fantastic place and a fantastic thing to do with all of these children. Anyone who knows me... I do think I live my life a bit Disney-fied.”
Lydia Bright added “It’s very exciting being at DLP today for the 25th Anniversary – I came here almost four years ago for the 20th Anniversary with all the family – it’s really good to be a DLP again. It’s good to fun and have fun for the day. It’s fantastic being with the kids and all the charities- seeing all their faces light up when we pulled into the entrance – giving them a chance to experience somewhere like Disneyland Paris is just amazing. They are all just so happy to be here. It’s like a symbol of your childhood – we all grew up watching Disney movies and getting lost in the magic and the imagination – I think that is what childhood is all about – just having your own imagination. We just feel like kids again. I can’t believe Disneyland Paris is 25 years old – it looks like you are on a film set, all sparkling – it’s fake.”
25TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS AT DISNEYLAND PARIS
• Body & Soul is a charity promoting the respect, dignity and wellbeing of children, teenagers and their families living with and affected by HIV. Their centre in the Angel area of London is a safe place that helps people deal with the everyday challenges that HIV presents.
• Fight for Peace uses boxing and martial arts, combined with education and personal development, to realise the potential of young people in communities affected by crime and violence.
• Oasis Children’s Venture is a local charity that runs three different and unique facilities for children and young people in Stockwell, London, a Children’s Nature Garden, a Karting Project and an Adventure Playground. All projects are open access and available for local children to attend after school, on Saturdays and during the school holidays.
• Comic Relief is a UK charity which aims to create a just world, free from poverty - where everyone is safe, healthy, educated and empowered. Since 1985, Comic Relief has raised over £1 billion. That money has helped, and is helping, people living incredibly tough lives, both at home in the UK and across the world. Comic Relief, registered charity 326568 (England/Wales); SC039730 (Scotland).
About Disneyland Paris
Disneyland Paris - Europe’s number one tourist destination, Disneyland Paris has welcomed more than 320 million visits since opening in 1992 (13.4 million visits in 2016). The resort boasts two spectacular theme parks (Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park) and seven themed Disney hotels with 5,800 rooms (more than 2,700 rooms are available in Selected and Associated
Hotels). Two full-service convention centers and a world-class 27-hole golf course are also present. In addition to this, the destination is home to Disney Village - one of the largest entertainment complexes in the Ile-de-France region. Spread over more than 30,000m2, Disney Village proposes themed dining, shopping and cinema experiences. Disneyland Paris comprises 59 attractions, 63 shops, and 55 restaurants.