Christmas spirit comes early for Tassie’s kids

3 December 2019|Community News| Off Comments off on Christmas spirit comes early for Tassie’s kids|

MORE than 1000 sick, disabled and disadvantaged children got into the festive spirit early when they gathered at the Derwent Entertainment Centre in November for the Tasmanian Special Children’s Christmas Party.

The Tasmanian business community provided the celebrations for free, proudly supporting Make-A-Wish Australia.

Event organiser Donna Bowen said the 23rd anniversary of the Tasmanian Special Children’s Christmas Party was one of 18 parties across Australia and New Zealand.

Together, more than 35,000 children joined the party.

Having worked with the Tasmanian Special Children’s Christmas Party for 18 years, Ms Bowen said this was the best party week they’d ever had.

“It’s a huge united effort to give children in these circumstances a happy day they will treasure always,” she said.

“These special children, aged from birth to 12 years, deserve an unforgettable Christmas.”

Ms Bowen said the party’s success “radiated”, with one long-term sponsor who attended for the first time being “blown away.”

The children enjoyed an array of entertainment with this year’s line-up including Matthew Garwood, Storm Troopers from the 501st, Super Heroes, Tony Voglino, plus many more performers throughout the day.

“There were activities like face painting, jumping castles, a merry-go-round, plus the children received high quality toys and everything on the day was free,” Ms Bowen said.

A police helicopter also made a surprise grand entrance, thrilling the children.

Ms Bowen said each year she was blown away by the good in the community.

More than 70 volunteers helped make the event a success by setting up and dismantling displays, helping with catering and handing out toys to the children.

“The volunteers, sponsors, businesses and individuals who support the party make it possible,” Ms Bowen said.

“Their generosity and the dedication of families and carers reflect the true spirit of Christmas.

“It’s all because of the community, it’s just a privilege to be able to do what I do – we’re so lucky.

“There is a need for children in these circumstances to have the chance to get together to share and enjoy a safe and inclusive event that understands and caters specifically for their many needs and challenges.”

Invitations to the party are issued each year to state and private schools, as well as government and charitable organisations across Tasmania.

Ms Bowen said the party gave sick, disadvantaged and disabled children a chance to just be children, as well as highlighted the generosity of the community.

“There’s so much turmoil in the world, but people are still good,” she said.

Caption: The Tasmanian business community came together recently to support Make-A-Wish Australia and participate in the Tasmanian Special Children’s Christmas Party at the Derwent Entertainment Centre. Photos credited to: KRS Photography.

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