Disney Brings Christmas Magic To Young Deserving Fan

disney wish buddy bench project

Disney surprised a young and incredibly deserving teenager from Indiana with the perfect Christmas present this year—a cruise trip abroad.

The Disney experience is characterized by how magical it is. Especially during the most magical time of the year, there’s nothing like being able to experience the holidays at either the “Most Magical Place on Earth” or the “Happiest Place on Earth.” However, there are more ways to experience the Disney magic than just the Disney Parks, whether that’s Walt Disney World Resort and its Parks—Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom—or Disneyland Resort and its Theme Parks—Disneyland Resort and Disney California Adventure.


Disney Wish/Courtesy of Disney

While the Walt Disney Company has been in the news recently for some not-so-savory occurrences, however, it’s Christmas Eve and is the perfect time to celebrate this wonderful gesture from Disney to an incredibly deserving teen from Fort Wayne, Indiana. 14-year-old Sammie Vance is the founder of Sammie’s Buddy Bench Project. Vance struggled with loneliness at school and began this program due to a deep desire to help others who may be feeling the same way.

To celebrate her incredible acts of kindness and compassion, Disney surprised Vance and her family with a holiday trip aboard the Disney Wish, the newest ship from Disney Cruise Line.

sammie vance buddy bench

Sammie Vance on her Buddy Bench/Courtesy of WANE15

“I didn’t expect that, like at all,” an excited Vance said when her parents broke the big news. “I think it’s important for people to know that you don’t have to do something big to make an impact,” Sammy explains of the impact she hopes to have on others. “My project started with one cap, it’s the small amounts of kindness that count. No matter their age, anyone can make a difference in the world.”


The Disney Wish is joining the Disney Magic, Disney Fantasy, Disney Dream, and Disney Wonder in the cruise ship fleet.

The Disney Wish is Disney’s latest cruise ship that had her maiden voyage just this year. One more ship will join the Disney cruise line—Disney Treasure—as announced during the D23 Expo this year. Guests interested in enjoying the Disney experience aboard these ships can also check out the 2023 home ports for each ship and their routes.

We at Disney Fanatic will continue to report on all Disney news.

About Priyanka Kumar

Priyanka is a writer, artist, avid reader, and travel enthusiast based in Chicago. In her free time, she is probably walking by the lake, catching up on the latest releases on TV, or spending inordinate amounts of time rewatching Moana, Encanto, and her Disney Channel life-long favorites Zack and Cody wreak havoc on the Tipton.

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