125 small special-needs children; one big magical dream

Dreams Take Flight Ottawa makes dreams come true by treating physically, mentally and socially challenged children to a magical day at Disney World

OTTAWA, Sept. 28, 2011 /CNW/ - Early this morning more than 125 physically, mentally and/or socially challenged children and close to 100 volunteers boarded an Air Canada flight—and made a dream come true. The flight took them for a day of fun at the most magical place on earth: Walt Disney World. For many of these children, this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity; a chance for just one day to forget about doctors, nurses, illnesses and troubled backgrounds and live their dreams by meeting "Mickey Mouse" in person.

A not-for-profit organization run by Air Canada employees and their families and friends, the Ottawa Chapter of Dreams Take Flight has been making dreams come true since 1995.

"It takes a lot of volunteer time, sponsorships and donations to make dreams come true," says Nicole Banville, President of the Dreams Take Flight Ottawa Chapter. "Air Canada donates a dry aircraft, but all additional expenses, including fuel, are funded through corporate and private sponsors and fundraising events. When I see the look on the faces of those kids and see the joy and the excitement though, it makes it all the hard work worthwhile."

Dreams Take Flight Ottawa uses specific criteria to choose special-needs children from various agencies in the Ottawa and Gatineau region for the annual flight. This year's agencies include Big Brothers Big Sisters Ottawa, Ottawa Inuit Children's Centre, Maison de la Famille Vallée-de-la-Lièvre et le Centre d'animation familiale. Children selected for the flight are usually aged between 6 and 12 on flight day and have never before visited any Disney theme park.

Dreams Take Flight began in 1989 when a group of Air Canada employees organized the first trip to Disney World. Since then, more than 22,000 children have had the chance for their dreams to take flight and there are eight local chapters across Canada. For more information, please visit www.dreamstakeflight.ca.

SOURCE Dreams Take Flight Ottawa

For further information:

For more information about Dreams Take Flight Ottawa, please contact:

  • Aurélie Walsh, Director of Communications and Media Relations, Dreams Take Flight, Ottawa Chapter, at 613-894-7537 or
  • Kelly Goulet, Communications, Dreams Take Flight, Ottawa Chapter, at 613-447-6412.

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Dreams Take Flight Ottawa

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