On June 22nd 2022, more than 150 Banijay France employees and stars took part in Baniday, the group’s worldwide annual day of action for sick children.

‘I’ll be smiling for three months!’

‘I’ve worked here for 20 years, and I’ve never seen such an emotional day.’

At the children’s hospital and rehabilitation centre in Bullion, Yvelines, the children and staff were thrilled by the visit from Banijay France staff and the stars of some of production company’s flagship programmes.

In the morning, Namadia and Coumba from Koh Lanta talked about their incredible experiences and adventures on the programme. They helped decorate the hospital’s sports centre, while 30 Banijay staff worked on gardening and installing a football pitch for children and teens.

Meanwhile, Magali Bergdah, the founder of Shauna Events, and influencers Marwa and Simon Castaldi who have hundreds of thousands of followers, held a social media workshop for teenagers in the hospital and their carers. This led to a passionate and informative conversation about the problems of fame and digital exposure.

At the end of the morning, TV star Cyril Hanouna arrived with an armful of presents for the children and teens. He spent several hours chatting with them and handing out signed photos – not forgetting taking time to chat with each carer he met in the tree-lined paths of the hospital.

After a great lunch, it was the Fort Boyard team’s turn. Chef Willy Rovelli, Passe Muraille and Passe Partout came to play with bundles of enthusiasm. After lots of fun in the garden, it was time for afternoon tea and a personalised video message from Père Fouras, live from the Fort! They then handed out hundreds of signed cards and precious Boyards, special coins from the Fort Boyard treasure trove.

At Necker Hospital, a team of musicians from ‘Don’t Forget the Lyrics’ arrived to fill the auditorium with music, with 20 Banijay employees. Magali Ripoli and her team had prepared a special musical set, with plenty of room for improvisation to suit the children, allowing them to come up on to the stage and sing their favourite songs. The Banijay staff, who set up the stage, were the first to see this interactive and joyful show.

An hour later, musicians from Beau Soir productions put on a classical music concert designed with kids in mind. Two violinists and a cellist played classical music and Disney themes in the hospital courtyard, not just for the children but also for parents and staff.

On the Necker Hospital campus, there were meetings all afternoon with researchers in the Imagine Institute, the number one centre for research into care and teaching around genetic illnesses. The Banijay staff had the chance to explore this unique place, to go into the laboratories with the researchers and to find out about the world of top level research.

Some of the Banijay employees also spent time in the 19th arrondissement, with the Envol team, who organise holidays with medical support for very ill children and their families. They helped the children make decorations for a big event this September which will celebrate their 25th anniversary and sending 20,000 people on holidays and days out.

In the evening, the Envol teams had the privilege of taking part in TPMP, Cyril Hanouna’s programme on C8. They met the presenter and the team, learning about the day to day of programme making and what goes on backstage. The day before, other young people and Envol employees had the thrill of being in the audience for Koh Lanta 2022 final on TF1.

The Banijay production teams were delighted to welcome children, teens, care staff and volunteers to several of their programmes: Les 12 Coups de Midi on TF1, Don’t Forget the Lyrics on France 2, Lego Masters on M6 and 28 Minutes on Arte.

A huge thank you to all the Banijay and LOV staff, and to all our production stars who gave their knowledge and enthusiasm so generously in the hospitals or in their studios. Children, teens, care workers, technical and administrative staff, parents and volunteers will all have happy memories of the event for a very long time!