Our History

Starlight has a rich history as an innovator responding to the critical needs of partner facilities in local communities around the world. Today, we partner with more than 600 hospitals, specialty clinics and camps, respite houses and hospices in the United States and Puerto Rico that collectively support more than 27 million pediatric visits every year. Worldwide, Starlight supports kids and families in 11 countries and territories in a growing network.

1982 

First Starlight wish granted by Peter Samuelson and Emma Samms.

1983 

Starlight Children's Foundation incorporated on February 2.

1986

Starlight opens in the United Kingdom.

1988

Starlight opens in Australia.

1989

Starlight opens in Canada.

1990

The first Starlight Site opens to support the overall health and wellbeing of pediatric patients by providing a beautifully designed child-friendly environment.

1991

Starbright Foundation is founded by Peter Samuelson and Steven Spielberg to harness the power of technology and the entertainment industry to create projects that empower seriously ill children and teens struggling with prolonged illness.

 

The Starlight Fun Center mobile entertainment unit is launched in pediatric facilities to provide distractive entertainment and therapeutic play.

1996

Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel opens a Starlight Site.

2001

From 2001 to 2004, Starlight launches a series of interactive and multimedia programs that educate children about medical procedures and illnesses, including Mysteries of Bone Marrow, Blood Tests, Coping with Chemo, Cystic Fibrosis, Living with Kidney Disease, Quest for the Code, Secrets of Spinal Fluid, Sickle Cell Slime-o-Rama, Spotlight on IVs, Radiology Center and
X-Men in Life Lessons.

 

PC Pals® is launched, providing laptops for pediatric patients.

2004

Starlight Children’s Foundation merges with Starbright Foundation.

2007

Get Fit, Get Right® is launched as an online program designed to reduce obesity in teens and help prevent type 2 diabetes.

2013

Starlight launches the world’s first technology platform that brings together donors to fund unmet needs of healthcare facilities to improve pediatric care.

2014

Starlight Giving Card enables individual donors and companies to give the gift of giving to friends, family and colleagues. Recipients redeem the Giving Cards to help fulfill critical unmet needs at hundreds of facilities across the US.