On Wednesday 19 August, eight year old Richard Traveller from Canvey Island visited intu Lakeside to experience the first part of a fabulous dream donated by the centre through their partnership with The Dream Factory.
Richard, who suffers from the debilitating condition Cerebral Palsy, will be granted his dream of swimming with dolphins in Portugal thanks to generous donations from intu Lakeside. To make the dream even more special for Richard, intu Lakeside surprised him and his family with an underwater digital camera which he can use to take photos of his amazing trip. Not only this, Hamley bear paid a visit to Richard at the centre and gifted him his own cute cuddly dolphin. The day was topped off with a delicious lunch at Pizza Express on behalf of intu Lakeside.
Richard will jet off to Portugal with his family for the fun filled holiday next month.
Richard’s mum, Michaela Traveller, comments: “I’m delighted that intu Lakeside has granted Richard’s dream – he is so excited about swimming with dolphins as it’s something that he’s wanted to do for a very long time! I’m truly grateful that intu Lakeside and The Dream Factory have been able to organise such a wonderful trip for our family – as a result of Richard’s health problems it is often difficult to take time out so this holiday will be amazing for all of us. In addition, the camera will be fantastic for Richard to help document his trip and will help create lasting memories for him.As part of intu Lakeside’s 25th birthday pledge to raise £25,000 for its charity of the year, The Dream Factory, the centre has been granting dreams for young people with life limiting or life threatening illnesses across Essex and the South East. intu Lakeside has been raising money for The Dream Factory since the start of 2015 through a variety of different activities (including a 500 mile staff bikeathon) and will continue to raise funds for the Essex based charity until the end of this year.
The Dream Factory focuses on creating lifelong memories to children and young people with life threatening or severe disabilities and has so far granted over 350 dreams. Thanks to intu Lakeside this number will continue to grow.
Donna Callander, Marketing Manager at intu Lakeside, comments: “It was wonderful to grant Richard’s dream of swimming with dolphins and we look forward to granting even more children’s wishes. The Dream Factory is a fantastic charity and we have been overwhelmed with the support we have received from not only visitors to the centre but staff and retailers who have got on board by doing their own fundraising too.”