Saturday, March 13, 2010

I Heart Make-A-Wish

Today’s Show Us Your Life theme over at Kelly’s Korner this week is favorite charities.  My favorite charity is the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  I’ve been volunteering for Make-A-Wish since last year, and it is such a fantastic organization.  I wish I’d started volunteering a long time ago.

Make-A-Wish is a non-profit wish-granting organization that is recognized nationwide, but I feel like there that there are a number of misconceptions about the organization.  I think the most common misconception is that the foundation grants the wishes only of terminally ill children.  This can be the case – but not always.  The criteria for a child being approved for a wish is that they must have (a physician-documented) life-threatening medical condition – i.e., a progressive, degenerative or malignant condition that has placed the child’s life in jeopardy.   So, it does have to be a life-threatening condition, but not necessarily one where the child is terminally ill (does that make sense?).  These kids and their families go through so much, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation is able to bring them a slice of joy in a world filled with frequent trips to doctors offices and hospitals and everything associated with those visits.

After a child has been referred to Make-A-Wish (this can be by a doctor, social worker, or even a parent), the foundation confirms their eligibility with the primary doctor of the child.  Once a child has been determined to be eligible, a team of Wish Granters (that’s me!!) is assigned to work on the wish.  The Wish Granters go out to meet the child and their family to learn about the child and find out their one true wish.  Wishes fall into one of four categories:

I want to have

I want to go

I want to be

I want to meet

So, a child could want to have a puppy, go to Hawaii, be a fashion designer, or meet Brad Pitt…or anything else!  Those are just some examples of what I would wish for :)

The Wish Granters capture the child’s wish, then relay it back to the local Make-A-Wish chapter.   The chapter pulls everything together (makes travel plans, arranges for the celebrity meeting, whatever the wish may be), and then the Wish Granters get to ‘deliver’ the wish to the child.  It’s such an awesome sight to see how happy these children (and their families) are when the wish is granted.

If you’re looking for an organization to donate either time or money to, I’d highly recommend you look up your local Make-A-Wish chapter and see how you can help.  You’ll have fun while contributing to a great foundation!

1 comment:

  1. What a cool organization! Good for you for getting involved with such a positive group!