Disney and Google Unveil Starlight Xperience VR Program for Young Hospital Patients
Young patients in hospitals can now explore new worlds. Anything from the Egyptian pyramids to a coral reef to the world of Star Wars. This is made possible via Starlight Xperience, a groundbreaking new technology program unveiled last week by Starlight Children’s Foundation. The innovative new program enables hospitalized kids to enjoy these and other immersive experiences through a state-of-the-art, hospital-ready headset.
Star Wars: Droid Repair Bay
Star Wars: Force for Change served as the Founding Sponsor of Starlight Xperience. This organization is the charitable initiative from Lucasfilm and The Walt Disney Company that harnesses the power of Star Wars to improve the lives of children around the world. At launch, the program will feature Star Wars: Droid Repair Bay. This program is the fun and interactive story created by ILMxLAB, Lucasfilm’s award-winning immersive entertainment division.
Through the specially-modified Lenovo Mirage Solo VR headsets, kids can enter a galaxy far, far away. They will also help repair fan-favorite BB-8 and other droids on General Leia’s ship. Additionally, there will be other age-appropriate and dynamic experiences such as virtual snowball fights, immersive field trips to exotic locations through Google Expeditions and Street View, meditation exercises and fun interactive games.
Furthermore, the content is designed to entertain and distract young hospital patients. It also invites them to explore the world and beyond through the magic of virtual reality.
“Providing these unique entertainment experiences reflects our commitment to bring comfort during what can be difficult times for kids and families. This is part of our Disney Team of Heroes initiative, which includes a $100 million commitment to children’s hospitals,” said Elissa Margolis, senior vice president, Enterprise Social Responsibility for The Walt Disney Company. “The collaboration with Google and Lenovo is the perfect blend of technology and content that we’ll be able to deliver to kids during their hospital stay.”
Starlight Xperience was developed at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford through a series of grants. These grants were provided by Starlight Foundation to the hospital’s CHARIOT program (short for Childhood Anxiety Reduction through Innovation and Technology). It was made available to patients at the hospital this summer as part of a soft launch that also included Children’s Hospital Colorado; Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center; Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul, Minnesota; and Texas Children’s Hospital.
In order to make this happen, multiple grants were provided. They came from The Walt Disney Company, Niagara Cares, and donations from individuals. For that reason, Starlight plans to deliver up to 1,000 Starlight Xperience kits to its network of hospital partners by the end of 2018. They also aim to double that number by the end of 2019.
“We believe Starlight Xperience has the potential to transform the hospital experience for millions of seriously ill children and their families,” said Chris Helfrich, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation. “We’re thrilled to stand beside The Walt Disney Company, Google, Lenovo and Niagara Cares in unveiling this exciting new program, which is the latest evolution in our 35-year history of bringing innovative entertainment technologies to hospitalized kids.”
Source Credit: The Walt Disney Company
Ready to experience Disney for yourself?
There are still fantastic 2018 and 2019 packages available. Fill out our form below for your FREE, no-obligation quote with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner with MickeyTravels!
Want more help planning your next Disney vacation? As an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, my goal is to help you plan the Magic your way. I create customized itineraries, book advanced dining and FastPass+ reservations, monitor for discounts for your vacation, and much much more! Also, did I mention that my services are FREE? Get in touch toll-free at 1-800-454-4501, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Facebook