Andrea Boscan
By Andrea Boscan

Make-A-Wish UK uses Totem's Event App to Enhance A Disney Wish Experience

News - 5 mins read
A graphic showing a boy meeting Mickey Mouse

LONDON, England, October 17 2022. Make-A-Wish® UK, a leading charitable foundation for critically ill children, has used Totem’s award-winning event app to support a unique Disney Wish experience in the UK, in partnership with The Walt Disney Company UK & Ireland and The Kentown Wizard Foundation.

‘A Disney Wish’ provided critically ill children with the opportunity to meet their Disney heroes without the need for overseas travel, granting their wishes at a magical three-day immersive experience in Staffordshire. The custom-built event app was used by over 200 families over the course of three weeks.

“We knew we needed to work with an agile technology supplier who had deep experience in the events sector,” commented Sarah Watson, Director of Finance and Technology, Make-a-Wish. “We selected Totem as we knew they could be a flexible partner, providing strategic advice as well as rapid creative and technical implementation.”

In the weeks leading up to the event, families were sent WhatsApp messages inviting them to download the app, with push notifications subsequently letting them know about various elements turned on in the run-up to the big day. In a post-event survey, 87% of families said that the app had helped build a sense of anticipation in the run-up to the event, while 94% agreed it helped them manage their time whilst onsite.

As Watson explains; “For our families, the app is the first touchpoint on this magical journey, it not only needed to carry the Make-a-Wish and Disney branding and look amazing, but we really wanted to build a sense of anticipation and delight.”

The app was used to navigate a variety of incredible Disney experiences on offer including a Winnie the Pooh and Friends picnic; Jedi Training Academy; a Mickey and Minnie Bedtime Story; a Frozen Sing-Along; Story Time with Belle in the Grand Ballroom and a Marvel Training Initiative featuring Marvel Super Heroes. Families used the app to view their personal schedules, navigate using a map of the event space and pre-order their meals. They could also check in at each activity to receive badges and certificates after volunteers scanned their QR code.

Sam Roythorne, Managing Director at Totem commented; “We are delighted to have played a part in the Disney Wish experience in the UK, which has allowed over 200 children with life-limiting or life-threatening illnesses to experience such joy. We look forward to continuing to work with Make-a-Wish to enhance more wish experiences with our intuitive technology.”

About Disney Responsible Business

At The Walt Disney Company, our purpose is to inspire a better world through the power of stories. As part of this, we are committed to operating our businesses responsibly and with integrity, taking care of our people and doing good in our world. Disney’s partnership with Make-A-Wish and other not-for-profit partners across Europe is an example of how, working with others, we help build emotional resilience. Together we bring the power of our brand, stories, and characters to inspire and create Moments that Matter for children and those closest to them when they need it the most. In 2021, we created over 58,000 life-changing moments across Europe. Our commitments, goals and progress is reported annually in The Walt Disney Company CSR report here. For more information on our programmes and our long-standing charitable partners please visit

About Make-A-Wish UK

Make-A-Wish UK is part of a global movement that was established in the UK in 1986 to create life-changing wishes that revive the childhood that critical illness often takes away.

Right now, more than 60,000* children in the UK have been diagnosed with a critical condition, changing their lives and the lives of their families forever. For them, the joy of childhood is brought to an abrupt end with treatment plans, appointments and worry taking over. The power of a wish revives a childhood stolen by critical illness. It brings light and joy to children and their loved ones, leaving a profound and lasting impact on all their lives.

But Make-A-Wish UK can’t be that light for everyone. It takes an army of volunteers, supporters and donors to help these children feel like children again. Together, we have the power to light up the darkness. Make-A-Wish® UK Charity Registration Nos. 295672/SC037479

To find out more about Make-A-Wish please visit or follow @makeawishuk on social media.

About The Kentown Wizard Foundation

The Kentown Wizard Foundation is based in Blackpool and was set up by philanthropist Kenneth Townsley in 2015. The foundations mission is to have a positive impact on the lives of children and young adults with serious, life-limiting conditions and disabilities. They do this, by making grants to UK registered charities whose aims, and values are closely aligned with their own and to date, have successfully gifted over £12,000,000.

Registered Charity Number – 1163956

About Hoar Cross Hall Spa Hotel

Hoar Cross Hall Spa Hotel is a spa retreat nestled in the Staffordshire countryside. Spanning more 185,000 square feet, guests can experience pamper days, weekend trips and staycations.

Hoar Cross Hall has recently completed a £14 million renovation, including refurbishing it’s 104 bedrooms, Long Gallery, Sunroom and Parlour. The Hall is one of the Largest Spas in Europe, offering guests access to an array of award-winning spa and relaxation facilities. For those feeling more active, there are more than 43 acres of mature woodland and picturesque gardens to explore and a range of outdoor activities.

Hoar Cross Hall has also been recognised by the International Travel Awards 2022 for ‘Best Spa Resort’ in England and has been nominated for ‘Best Hotel Spa’ in the Good Spa Guide Awards 2022 and ‘England’s Best Spa Retreat’ in the World Spa Awards 2022.

Andrea Boscan

Written by Andrea Boscan



Get in touch

Our team of specialists are ready to help you shape your perfect engagement ecosystem.

020 3886 2686
8 Hornsey Street
N7 8EG

    By submitting this form, you are agreeing to Totem’s Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.