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Saturday, Jun 03, 2023

A child with blood cancer has his wish come true

A child with blood cancer has his wish come true

Everyone has a wish, and for Jarvis, a 10-year-old with a rare form of myelodysplastic syndrome, his wish is a simple dream to sing and play music in front of a crowd.
On World Wish Day, Make-A-Wish Hong Kong celebrated its 25th anniversary at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, launching a new series of initiatives, beginning with fulfilling Jarvis’ wish.

The Wish child of Make-A-Wish Hong Kong, Jarvis, was diagnosed with a rare form of myelodysplastic syndrome in 2018. Despite the excruciating pain of his critical illness, he never stopped pursuing his passion for music. After recovering, he wishes to perform for sick children and inspire hope and spread love through his music.

Moved by his story, Make-A-Wish reached out to the Hong Kong celebrity and singer Ronald Cheng to create a stage for Jarvis on World Wish Day and its 25th anniversary celebration, where he can perform and spread warmth to sick children through his story and mu2sic.

The April 29 celebration marked not only the 25th anniversary of Make-A-Wish, but also the first time since the start of the COVID pandemic for a gathering of more than 400 Make-A-Wish children and families. Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, in support of families of children with critical illnesses, sponsored the celebration and provided the perfect backdrop for Jarvis’ dream to come true.

The story of Jarvis

Five years ago, Jarvis had to stop school and undergo multiple chemotherapy treatments and bone marrow transplants in the face of a sudden and serious illness. The physical and mental anguish taught Jarvis to be grateful for his health and happiness. After his recovery, he was motivated to “Enjoy Life, Enjoy the Spotlight” and bravely pursued his dream of becoming a professional drummer.

After learning about Jarvis' wish, Make-A-Wish reached out to Ronald Cheng and the RTV team, as well as veteran musician Joey Tang, to help Jarvis prepare for his performance at the event and provide him with professional coaching to curate his song list and practice.

Jarvis’ mini concert rocked the stage of the celebration. Performing five songs in a row, his marvellous musical talent and drum skills put bright smiles on the faces of guests and families. Hong Kong Disneyland Resort joined in on this joyous dream-come-true moment, bringing Genie from Aladdin onto the stage to surprise and congratulate Jarvis.

Jarvis was over the moon, “I’d like to express my gratitude to my family, friends, medical staff and bone marrow donors. I also hope that my songs and drum music instill hope in Wish children and patients. Just as I managed to overcome my adversities, I hope they can also be brave enough to confront challenges and never give up in pursuing their dreams.”

Granting wishes of children with critical illnesses

Chairperson of Make-A-Wish Hong Kong, Anita Lai, hopes that through this story of making Jarvis' wish come true, the public will be more aware and supportive of sick children and their parents: “Over the past 25 years, Make-A-Wish® has been transforming the lives of sick children and providing unparalleled strength to their families in the face of adversity. We believe that the experience of making a wish come true fills a child's life with hope, strength and joy. So, we will continue to work hard to make wishes come true for every eligible child.”

Disney’s efforts

Disney, also a believer that wishes have the power to change lives, has been in partnership with Make-A-Wish since 1980. Working together, they have created magical wishes for people all around the world – more than 145,000 distinctly Disney wishes have been granted globally. To bring Disney wishes to the local community, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort has partnered with Make-A-Wish Hong Kong since the opening of the park in 2005.

Lesz Banham, chief financial officer of Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, was touched by the celebration: “We are grateful and honored that the Disney brand can bring happiness, comfort and inspiration to families of children with critical illnesses. The power of Disney’s stories, characters and immersive experiences have a profound impact on those in need around the world. Through this Celebration, we wish to reinforce Hong Kong Disneyland’s commitment to making dreams come true.”

He also thanked all the incredible sponsors and healthcare partners for their commitment to making the world a better place. “We are also grateful to Make-A-Wish for allowing us to join this meaningful journey, giving us the chance to give back to the community.” To make further contributions, Hong Kong Disneyland will be donating a total of HK$250,000 to Make-A-Wish.

Hong Kong Disneyland is devoted to granting many more wishes in the future, making dreams come true for Wish kids and all who visit.
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