May 14-2019
Disney to donate up to $1 million to help grant wishes for children with critical illnesses via global challenge

The Walt Disney Company and Make-A-Wish launched the #FriendLikeMe challenge – World Wish Day – to celebrate the 24 May 2019 release of Aladdin.

The #FriendLikeMe challenge is part of a global cause marketing campaign supported by two Make-A-Wish wish granters, Disney and Will Smith. The actor/recording artist, who stars in Disney’s Aladdin as the wish-granting Genie, encourages fans and celebrities to participate in the campaign and help show the world: Where there’s a wish, there’s a way.

“The release of Aladdin presents an authentic opportunity to connect the film’s powerful theme of wish-granting to the wonderful work Make-A-Wish does in support of children dealing with serious illnesses around the world,” said The Walt Disney Company senior vice president, enterprise social responsibility Elissa Margolis. “Wishes are all about hope and we’re so glad to be able to continue our work with Make-A-Wish and invite fans to join us in helping grant more wishes that will bring hope into the lives of deserving kids and their families.”

The campaign poses the question: “If you were the Genie in Disney’s Aladdin and had the chance to grant three heartfelt wishes for someone, who would you share them with? Tag a friend on Twitter and/or Instagram. For every public post with #FriendLikeMe from 29 April through 24 May 2019, Disney will donate $5 up to $1 million to Make-A-Wish to help grant life-changing wishes to children battling critical illnesses all over the world.

“The #FriendLikeMe challenge unites two of our longest-tenured and most passionate wish granters in Disney and Will Smith. Both Disney and Will have forever transformed the lives of countless wish kids by allowing them to experience the hope and healing of a wish come true,” said Make-A-Wish America president and CEO Richard Davis.

Since 1980, Disney and Make-A-Wish have helped grant life-changing wishes for more than 130,000 children with critical illnesses around the world. Today, one out of every two wishes granted in the U.S. is a Disney wish. When a wish is granted, a child replaces fear with confidence, sadness with joy, and anxiety with hope.

Make-A-Wish International president and CEO Michel Rudolphie added, “By participating in the challenge, members of the global community can do their part to bring the life-changing impact of a wish to more children. We are grateful to Disney and Will Smith for joining us on this journey to transform the lives of more children, families, volunteers, supporters, medical professionals and entire communities worldwide.”

Granting wishes is a part of The Walt Disney Company’s philanthropic and outreach initiative, Disney Team of Heroes, which delivers comfort and inspiration to families with children facing serious illness.