Its tradition for a new cruise ship to have a godparent named ahead of its christening ceremony, usually an individual of high standing in the local community.
By naming the children of Make-A-Wish as godchildren to the ship, the cruise line is putting a new spin on this ancient tradition, one that ties in with the ethos of the cruise line and the name of the new ship.
In a press release, the cruise line said it wanted to recognise the bravery and determination of the Make-A-Wishchildren.
The children will join a list of Disney Cruise Line godmothers that includes Patty Disney, Tinkerbell, Jennifer Hudson and Mariah Carey.
Following tradition, the children will recite the blessings for the newest ship during the Disney Wish’s christening ceremony, which will also showcase the Disney Wish and celebrate Make-A-Wish as a key part of making wishes come true aboard the Disney Cruise Line ships.
The long-term partnership between Disney and Make-A-Wish traces back to 1980, working together to grant life-changing wishes for more than 145,000 children with critical illnesses worldwide.
With many of the wishes of the Make-A-Wish children involving visits to global Disney destinations, one out of every two wishes granted in the United States through the organization has been a Disney wish.
“Make-A-Wish children and their families are brave, determined, resilient, and some of the most inspirational people you could ever meet,” said Bob Chapek, CEO, Walt Disney Company. “Wishing is a transformative experience that brings hope and joy, and it is our privilege to proudly recognize children who strive to overcome challenges as our Disney Wish godchildren.”
“Working with Make-A-Wish to support children with critical illnesses and making magic when it is needed most will always be a priority for The Walt Disney Company,” he added.
“The selection of Make-A-Wish children as the godchildren of the Disney Wish is another example of how Disney and Make-A-Wish continue to find innovative ways to bring joy to the lives of wish kids and their families,” said Richard K. Davis, President, Make-A-Wish America.
Disney Cruise Line and Make-A-Wish have also collaborated to create a line of Disney-themed merchandise. Disney will donate 10% of the line’s profits to Make-A-Wish in support of their efforts.