After achieving a $5 million fundraising goal for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Carnival Cruise Line has announced an additional $10 million goal by 2020, while continuing its role as the hospital’s Official Celebration Partner, according to a press release from the cruise line.
The announcement was made by Carnival President Christine Duffy at the hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, during the cruise line’s third annual Day of Play which this year featured a variety of Dr. Seuss-themed activities for patients and their families. At the event, Carnival officials presented the hospital with an oversized check for $5 million, representing the funds raised for St. Jude over the past two years – a full two years ahead of schedule. Carnival has raised $8 million in total for the hospital since the start of their partnership in 2010.
Modeled after the line’s popular fleetwide Seuss at Sea program, the “Dr. Seuss On The Loose” Day of Play transformed a pavilion at the hospital into a Dr. Seuss-themed play area. The day’s highlights included the Seuss-a-Palooza Parade and Story Time featuring a spirited reading of The Cat in the Hat, along with fun activities like face painting, bean bag toss, a photo booth, arts and crafts, dancing and more. There was also a replica of a Dr. Seuss Bookville family reading venue modeled after a similar facility on the cruise ships Carnival Freedom and Carnival Vista, the latter of which is under construction and set to debut in Europe May 1, 2016. Fun and tasty Dr. Seuss-inspired snacks and treats, along with a variety of giveaways, were included, as well.
In addition to serving as the Official Celebration Partner of St. Jude, the cruise line conducts a variety of Care to Play: Carnival for St. Jude Kids shipboard fundraising activities throughout the year. These include a fun dance activity called Groove for St. Jude and the Beary Cuddly program where kids can make their own stuffed animal with proceeds benefiting the hospital. Additionally, when guests purchase a designated bakery item from the line’s on-board shops or prior to their cruise on carnival.com, Carnival donates a portion of each item sold to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.