Disney and the nonprofit Starlight Children’s Foundation teamed up at Texas Children’s Hospital to host a Spidey-themed delivery event to celebrate the launch of Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends Season 2. Hospitalized patients and their families had the opportunity to be among the first in the United States to enjoy a pre-screening of the first episode of the hit series’ new season, which launches August 19 on Disney Channel and Disney Junior. Cast member Armen Taylor, who voices Hulk, made a special appearance at the celebration to meet with patients and their families.
In addition, the group distributed Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends-themed toys, activity packs, and books. Patients took photos with their families, physicians, and nurses in front of a large backdrop featuring characters from Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends to commemorate the special day.
“Today was a different experience versus our normal hospital visits,” said Brenna Stelly, whose child, Everly, enjoyed the Disney experience. “This opportunity allowed her to see that hospitals can be fun. It’s not always about her diagnosis; it can be about her happiness as well.”
“We’re incredibly grateful for the longstanding relationship with Disney and the generous donation of Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends-themed products,” added Adam Garone, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation. “Delivering fun experiences like this today help hospitalized kids forget about their illnesses for just a moment and rediscover the joy of childhood.”
“At Starlight, transforming the hospital stay is core to our mission of delivering happiness to seriously ill kids and their families,” Garone continued. “Thank you to Disney and Texas Children’s Hospital for the support in creating this positive experience that patients will carry with them long after they leave the hospital.”
Tabitha Rice, executive vice president of Texas Children’s Hospital, said, “Our Texas Children’s physicians and staff were delighted to watch the joy and excitement on the faces of our hospitalized patients as they reveled in this unique Disney visit. Thanks to Texas Children’s established relationship with Disney and support from Starlight Children’s Foundation, our patients and their families experienced pure Disney joy—a most welcome reprieve from the many stresses that can accompany a child’s hospital stay.”
The event was part of Disney’s commitment of $100 million to help children’s hospitals reimagine the patient experience and deliver joy when it’s needed most. In 2018, Disney chose Texas Children’s Hospital as the first children’s hospital in the nation to pilot its pediatric hospital initiative. The program helps ease the fear and anxiety of a hospital stay by bringing the wonder of Disney stories to patients and families. The program transforms hospital spaces with imaginative installations, including interactive murals and digital displays, and it also creates personalized moments by delivering Disney-themed Starlight Hospital Wear, care packages, and products. In addition, the program provides complimentary access to Disney+ and special screenings of newly released movies. Texas Children’s Hospital staff receive colorful employee badges featuring Disney characters to further provide joy and comfort to patients and their families during appointments. To help turn patients’ hospital stays into memorable, Disney-inspired experiences, Texas Children’s Hospital staff receive in-person training.
This summer, Disney teamed up with Starlight Children’s Foundation to deliver packages filled with a variety of Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends products—including books, toys, and activity packs—to children’s hospitals across the country.
According to Garone, the child life team at partner hospitals provide Starlight’s state-of-the-art programs as distraction tools to help young patients get through the pain and stress of serious illnesses and hospitalization. Starlight offers its programs—which include Starlight Gaming, Starlight Hospital Wear, and Starlight Deliveries of toys and games—free of charge to over 800 hospitals and healthcare facilities in the U.S.
To learn more, visit starlight.org/disney.