Wow what a night. It has been great. Thank you to the Zoo people they have been so generous to us all and the boys have loved it. I was staggered at the lovely parcel that they gave the boys it was very generous.
Trudi, Peter, Alvin & Roland
It was good to be able to see the animals at dusk they seemed to be more active than sometimes during the day. It was relaxing to wonder around and to listen to people talk about the animals. I found this informative. Thanks for tea, drinks and entertainment. We appreciated all the time you put into making this happen for us all. Thankyou.
What a great event. Alex really liked the cheetahs, the motorbikes and enjoyed racing around. He loved the BBQ food and so did Grace. Thank you to everyone who contributed to make this a relaxing and enjoyable night out for us
Our daughter had got binoculars for Christmas and these became very useful for her! She enjoyed wandering round and we enjoyed watching her enjoy it all. She was very taken with the cheetah cubs and the talk that the guide gave. Her siblings really enjoyed it also. They enjoyed the food and the way that it was spread out so you could leisurely eat. It was also good to meet some other families as well as catch up. It would have been good to have times that things were going to be on as I worried about missing some things.
The face painting was amazing and we enjoyed Rays Road-show. It is so good to see our family being together, out of the hospital and laughing. It was great medicine – thankyou.
Gill, Dave & Family
What a great night. Both the boys really enjoyed it. Max loved the being a fireman. It was good to wander around and see things. It was great to come out together as a family.
The Family of Endeavour Alexander Durkin thank you. (Endeavour died 2 year this April) the Zoo was one her favourite places.
“Please thank everybody concerned for a wonderful night at the Zoo. Especially the Zoo staff and all those sponsors who combined to produce a really amazing night for the families involved with the Child Cancer Foundation…..we are in awe of all of those who made it possible.
Snow, Georgina, William and Gae
I loved Rays Roadshow –he was awesome. He appealed to all ages.
Thanks for a wonderful night out. So positive for all of us, it was great to do things as a family. Great to catch up with friends. The idea of a BBQ was great the kids loved it.
The firemen were great – we have a budding fireman now! Thanks to everyone who put this on it was a fantastic night out.
Rose, Henry, Jane, Peter
It was great to do something together as a family. We really enjoyed the guides telling us about the animals it was so much more informative.
Fiona, Krystina, Paul
This is just a very quick message to thank you and your staff so very much for the fantastic night that you put on for all of us through the Child Cancer Foundation.
It really was unbelievable. Our whole family has a wonderful time. And it wasn’t just because it was so well organised – but because it felt so great. It was the atmosphere that was best of all – all of the personal touches and the amazing generosity of your staff to share their time and personal interests with us that “made” it. My 2 boys just loved the scissor-lift, feeding the giraffe and the fire poi. And a particular thanks to the man with the motorbikes who explained how the engine works in a way that a 3 yr old could understand! We still talk about it lots in our household.
I am sorry it has taken me so long to get this to you. Hugh started school last week – which we turned into quite a celebration (wonderful, but busy).
Thalia (and Gavin, Hugh and Jim)
Please convey our family’s appreciation to the Wellington Zoo, its staff and volunteers for the excellent evening they put on for Child Cancer families yesterday. Having the other activities – poi, machinery, fire engines and face painting – added spice to the event. Rayz Roadshow was outstanding – rarely have I been to a show which has had appeal to all age groups, from the very little ones to teenagers (often difficult to please) to adults. The food and drink were great, and spreading it out meant better crowd control, and we could just get one thing and walk around and finish it before eating something else (instead of having to pick up everything at the same place, and having to stop and eat it all). And last by not least the ‘party bag’ was extremely generous and contained items that both young children and teenagers were happy to receive.
My suggestions for improvement are minor, and their omission by no means marred an enjoyable evening:
1. The ice cream location could be marked on the map.
2. Indicate (probably on the map) that the chill out room had hot drinks available.
2. A list of feeding times might be useful (animals, that is).
Thank you too for the efforts of CCF and Canteen staff. Every such thing helps our children view cancer as a positive, though traumatic, experience.
This is the first of many!! Here is a note that came through this morning. We have had phone calls today and there were messages on the phone when I arrived at work! This is not a usual occurrence for the families to ring in!
Thank you for a fantastic night and the parcels were beyond believable!! For great organisation, helpful and informative staff and volunteers, great animals that roamed around saying hi and waving to us, for the ice creams and the amazing face painters, for the motor bikes that some older young people really enjoyed, for the fire poi’s, and the BBQ was most appreciated – people really enjoyed the relaxed time wandering around and catching up with others, and Rays Roadshow was a great way to end the evening. The glow sticks were great and Alison did an amazing job in directing us you could see the lights at quite a distance. Thanks for the Fire Brigade we have some ‘buddying’ Fire people now!!
Thank you seems so small a word to show appreciation for all you have done however it is very heartfelt.
From a mum:
‘What a wonderful evening and a wonderful time we had. It was fantastic organisation and a very easy and pleasant evening. Please pass on how well I thought it was put together and they gave us such a lovely welcome. The gifts at the end were amazing. Thank you also for a great night out, this is the first night out as a family in a such a relaxing atmosphere and it was appreciated by us all.’
Reactions for Wellington Zoo (New Zealand):
I have learnt that you were responsible for putting together last night’s “Dream Night at the Zoo” and I wanted you and Alison to know how wonderful it was for the families of those children touched by cancer to be a part of this experience.
My niece Endeavour died of leukemia two years ago, aged three and a half. We still think of her each and every day. It is particularly hard for my sister & her husband at this time of the year because Endeavour died on 4 April so we are approaching another anniversary.
Of course, we are not always sad! We had some wonderful (and funny) times with Endeavour and one of her favourite places of all time was the zoo – so it was particularly nice to be there again last night.
Added to this, the experience of being at the zoo at ‘twilight time’ was amazing. We have never done this before and the animals behaved quite differently than they might in the heat of the midday sun.
To all your staff who gave such interesting & informative talks, to the barbecue cooks, to the Weta people, to Hirepool, to the Fire Service, the owner of the Harley, to the suppliers of the glow lamps, to who ever put the gift bags together, to the fire poi man, to Ray’s Roadshow and to anyone else whose name I may not know … THANK YOU.
The Child Cancer Foundation does fantastic work and were amazingly supportive when Endeavour was ill. They are still with us now that she has gone. It is really good for our son Daniel, Endeavour’s cousin, to know that she is still a part of us. He is pictured above, doing his impression of a ‘rampaging red panda’ in Eastbourne late last night! He also loves the zoo and we ‘adopted’ a tiger last year!
Lots of love from Charlotte, Warwick & Daniel Gendall
I would like to thank you on behalf of the children and families at Lothian Autistic Society for a fantastic Dreamnight at Edinburgh Zoo. The event was very well organised and all the children thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
It is good to be able to take children with an autistic spectrum disorder and their families to events such a s these as they can enjoy the experience of the zoo without having their behaviour judged by others.
Many thanks and best wishes for your future activities
Vivienne Bon, Office Development Manager, Lothian Autistic Society, 66A Newhaven Road, Edinburgh, EH6 5QB
Some reactions from the BUDAPEST ZOO guestbook:
„Every moment of this evening was a great joy, see you on the next Dreamnight! Thanks for everything!” Edina Gombos (tv2)
„I enjoyed this wonderful evening very much. I have been to the zoo several times but never thought that it is so nice in the night!” Dr. Szabó
„Thanks for the joyful evening walk – we had a great time here!” Rozman Family
„Thanks, that was big fun!” Bernadett, Nikolett, Anna
„This evening was a big big fun!” Niki, Bea
„We spent a very good evening here!” Benji
„Thanks for the unforgettable atmosphere!” Eszter, Gergely
„Every staff member was very cute and nice even at 23.00!!! Thanks for everything!” Family of 4
Some reactions from the MARWELL ZOOLOGICAL PARK guestbook:
“A very BIG thank you for putting on Dreamnight – our little girl has been on chemotherapy for the past 19 months and we haven’t been able to do nice things as a family – our daughters had a wonderful time”
“Our three children all with special needs had a thoroughly enjoyable evening in the superbly relaxed atmosphere of not having to worry about the kids having a fit or knowing that other people are not staring at you – just seeing the look on the kids faces was enough of a treat in itself”
“The look on the faces from our children when they saw the giraffes at such close quarters was immeasurable – we appreciate all the hard work that goes into an event like this and cannot thank you enough”
POLISH ASSOCIATION FOR THE MENTALLY HANDICAPPED
81-425 Gdynia, ul. Harcerska 4
phone/fax: (+ 48 58 622 07 48)
Mr Michał Targowski, Director ZOO Gdańsk-Oliwa, ul. Karwieńska 3, 80-328 Gdańsk
On behalf of the handicapped children and their families, we would like to thank you for the exceptional gift the children received for the Children’s Day.
Participation in the “Dreamnight at the zoo” was for our children an opportunity to experience many happy moments, which will long remain in their memories.
We send special thanks to Education Department, which was strongly involved in organizing and carrying out the event, as well as showed great understanding of our children’s problems. At the same time we would like to wish success, many achievements and satisfaction in personal and professional life to all the employees of the Zoological Garden.
Manager Office for Institutions’ Maintenance , Renata Tkaczyk
Some reactions for GDANSK OLIWA ZOO:
PRIMARY AND JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL No 31, AT MEDICAL ACADEMY IN GDAŃSK
80-211 Gdańsk, ul. Dębinki 7, phone: +48 58 349 20 27, phone/fax: +48 58 301 71 12
Mr Michał Targowski, Municipal Zoological Garden of Sea Coast, ul. Karwieńska 3, 80-328 Gdańsk-Oliwa
Dear Director Targowski,
We were very happy to observe lively, emotional reactions of our children on the evening of Friday, 3rd June, 2005. For the following days we listened to their reports with interest and patience. Our children-students are small patients of pediatric wards of Medical Academy in Gdańsk.
In order to take part in the “Dreamnight at the zoo” we had to receive permission of their doctors, ask them to postpone administering intravenous medicine, as well as make sure the children have save journey to the ZOO and back to the hospital. However, our efforts have been generously rewarded.
Children disconnected from drips had a chance to leave hospital for the first time in several days (sometimes weeks) and experience exceptional adventures.
They most liked close contact with animals and the ride in a „little puffer train”. Happiness, smile and satisfaction accompanied them throughout the evening. The event has appeared to be a great idea, and you carried it out with great care of our children, so heavily experienced by fate.
We warmly thank you Director for this evening. We also thank the employees of the ZOO and all who have participated in organizing and sponsoring the event.
Director, Mgr Rajmund Ejdziukiewicz
To all the Currumbin staff involved with Dreamnight, volunteers, fairies, giant crocodiles, bears and generous sponsors…..
Let me just say, WOW. On behalf of my husband and I, and my two little boys, Riley and Noah, thank you for such a fantastic night. Everything looked so beautiful, and it was just amazing to see all the animals at nighttime.
We received our invitation to Friday night via our association with Montrose Access as our 8 year old son, Riley, is a client. He has Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy which is currently an incurable fatal disease. We don’t know how long we will be blessed to have him in our lives as we loose our boys from as early as 13, and at best he may see his 21st birthday – but by then the disease will have taken its toll on his body. Our life revolves around constant trips to the hospital for therapy treatment that will hopefully keep him walking for a lot longer, but in the next couple of years we expect this disease to have him confined permanently to a wheelchair. He is an inspiration and a joy and we are blessed that he is in our life. As for our other little man, Noah, he has to spend a lot of time waiting around while his brother has therapy, and has been robbed of a playmate to run around with – luckily they are best friends, and even though he is only 6, he understands his big brother’s limitations without fuss. Noah may not have the disease, but he is living with it as well.
I just wanted to give you a small snapshot of two of the children who your generosity helped last Friday night. We know we are running out of days for our little man, and we try to make each one memorable.
Thank you all for creating a very special memory for our little family – and my goodness, we knew we would be lucky enough to get a photo, but the gift bag AND the toys from Santa were a lovely surprise – my boys just felt so spoilt.
Peter and Kathryn Sheehan
Wongawallan Qld 4210
P.S. A special thanks goes to Matt, that’s Ranger Matt, sorry, Rocking Ranger Matt (my little men remind me)- who kept on entertaining his little following as the heavens opened up, even though his show had finished.
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