17/08/11 – Twelve year old Kerry Bowden from Castel in Guernsey has had her dearest wish for a flight in a hot air balloon granted by Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s leading wish granting charity for children with serious and terminal illnesses, with the help of Virgin Balloon Flights.
In August 2001, Kerry was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, which is a condition that has caused her a significant amount of pain and suffering and meant that she required regular treatment and therapy for seven years, although she is currently in remission.
Her mother Anne says, “Kerry is like any other girl her age – she loves fashion, clothes, hair, handbags, make up, and music. Kerry, who is a talented swimmer, has learnt to surf and is now learning how to roller skate. She dreams of going for a ride in a hot air balloon and, when she was referred to Starlight for a wish, she asked the charity if they could make her dream come true.
With the help of corporate supporter Virgin Balloon Flights, Starlight arranged for Kerry and her parents, Anne and David, and her brother, Adam, to experience a once-in-a-lifetime trip up in to the clouds in a balloon.
Kerry, who Anne says “has had to endure more pain that most people have to endure in their whole lifetime”, had her wish granted on Monday 15th August. In addition to the incredible ride, Kerry and her family also enjoyed a special breakfast with the pilot, Spencer Craze, who told them all about flying hot air balloons.
Afterwards, Kerry said, “I still can’t believe that my wish came true, it was truly a once in a lifetime experience. Many thanks to you all at Starlight and to every one else who made my wish come true.”
Contact: Henny Breakwell
Tel: 020 7262 2881 #231
Starlight grants once-in-a-lifetime wishes for seriously and terminally ill children, restoring the magic and fun of childhood and giving the whole family happy memories to share, whatever the future holds.
Starlight also creates entertainment in every hospital and hospice throughout the UK. Sick children go to Starlight parties, laugh their way through pantomimes, go out on Starlight Escapes, play games and watch films on the Starlight Fun Centre, and enjoy the toys and puzzles of the Starlight Distraction Box. Happy children respond better to treatment and Starlight helps children to forget about their illness and simply have a bit of fun.
You can make a donation online or by calling us on 020 7262 2881. For every £1 you donate, Starlight can assure you that over 91p goes towards helping very ill children. To refer a child for a wish, simply complete our wish referral form.