Northern Lights Charity ‘Class of 2018’ Took Lapland by Storm
The Northern Lights Charity strap-line is ‘Making Today’s Dreams Tomorrow’s Destination’ and that’s exactly what they achieved with the 2018 trip to Lapland.
20 children, 6 volunteers, 4 medical staff, 1 Santa, lots of elves, reindeer and huskies made the 31st Northern Lights trip to Lapland one to remember! The 2018 destination was 200 miles further north than previous trips, checking in at Ivalo airport for the Saariselka resort. This meant that there was a good fall of snow to arrive to on Friday the 14th December and once kitted out in snow suits, boots, thermals, gloves and hats we wasted no time in getting the children out to have a good ol’ romp and play in the snow.
The impact of the trips to Lapland cannot be underestimated, nurses from Alder Hey Children’s Hospital summed this up:
“Northern Lights have allowed hundreds of very poorly children to receive a boost in their confidence and wellbeing which is hard to match. The children return home from Lapland invigorated and the parents are so thankful. For the few days, they can forget being the focus of hospital treatments and being enclosed in a sanitized environment. The children are exposed to new experiences, new friends, plenty of fresh (freezing) air and of course they meet Father Christmas. As nurses, we can testify to the difference in the children when they return for further treatment. All they want to talk about is their trip to Lapland and reminisce looking back at pictures, making the other nurses on our ward jealous!”
Content that Northern Lights has made more dreams come true the charity now looks forward to 2019. Fundraising continues with the Chester Marathons in May and October and a second trip to Disney in Paris for more children with life limiting illnesses.
Other activities over the four days included; tobogganing, husky and reindeer sledging, snow mobiles, a husky farm, a gala dinner, performing elves, singalongs and of course the all important visit to meet Santa!
Santa had received the children’s letters and already knew exactly what they would like for Christmas. If there were any doubts whether the children were on the ‘naughty or nice’ list Santa quashed them by saying ‘he knows and he’s the man’! We were delighted that he had all the children were on the ‘good’ list and rightly so!
The days flew by in a whirlwind of snowy activity and as Monday the 17th December arrived thoughts returned to going home. Arriving in Manchester airport there were emotional reunions with families. Hugs, tears, laughter and farewells saw the class of 2018 on their way ready for Christmas with memories to cherish, new friends and amazing experiences to share.
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With thanks to Annette Jones, Kirsty Carroll and Northern Lights for the photos.