Sea World Cruises has joined forces with Make-A-Wish Australia to help children with life- threatening illnesses realise their dreams of seeing whales in the wild.
Zac Chalmers, age 10, and Mason McGregor, age 7, were welcomed aboard Sea World Cruises’ watching vessel, the Spirit of Migaloo II along with their siblings and families on Saturday, 19 October 2019.
‘We noticed that several guests coming on whale watch tours were seriously ill and for whom seeing a whale was the fulfilment of a life-long ambition. As a company we wanted to help make this achievable for more people, so we reached out to Make-A-Wish Australia to become an official wish partner,’ said Brand Manager for Sea World Cruises, Lauren Horner.
Zac, who recently spent nine-and-a-half months in hospital, chose whales as his wish because, ‘I’d watched lots of movies about whales when I was getting treatment and I wanted to see them in the wild for myself.’ For Mason, who aspires to become a marine scientist when he grows up, it was because, ‘I really like the ocean and the creatures that live in it and seeing them makes me feel happy.’
Each child’s Wish Journey is carefully planned and delivered over several stages to create a positive, lasting impact. Wishes are designed to complement a child’s medical treatment, working to calm, distract and inspire at a time they need it most.
During the whale watching tour, Zac and Mason saw several pods of mother and calf pairs which is typical for this stage of the migration. They also took on the role of Captain, steering the AUD 4 million vessel under the supervision of skipper Lachlan Taylor, and the crew signed their gift Sea World Cruises t-shirts as a keepsake of the experience.
‘My favourite part was seeing the baby whale jump (breach) out of the water and seeing so many different whales,’ said Zac. ‘It was amazing! My new favourite type of whale is the humpback whale because they like to jump so much,’ said Mason.
‘Seeing the joy on Zac’s face as he saw the whales was overwhelming. Our whole family was made to feel like celebrities. It was a day that we will all truly treasure forever. One that without the help of Sea World Cruises and Make-A-Wish Australia, our family would never have had the opportunity to experience,’ said Zac’s mother, Kylie Chalmers.
Sea World Cruises is the Gold Coast’s premier cruise company offering calm water sightseeing cruises and whale watching tours aboard Australia’s newest and most advanced whale watching vessel Spirit of Migaloo II. For more information, visit seaworldcruises.com.au
Make-A-Wish Australia is a non-profit organization that grants wishes for children between ages 3- 18 all across Australia, who are battling life-threatening medical conditions. For more information, visit makeawish.org.au.