PHOENIX, Oct. 5, 2017 – Make-A-Wish® has announced that, thanks to millions of supporters since its founding in 1980, the organization recently surpassed 300,000 wishes granted in the United States and its territories. The children’s charity sparked the American wish-granting movement when family, friends and community members joined together to grant the wish of a 7-year-old boy with leukemia to be a police officer in Phoenix, Ariz. Since then, Make-A-Wish has spread around the globe, granting wishes for children with critical illnesses in more than 50 countries worldwide. Although the organization has grown considerably, Make-A-Wish still prides itself on being locally-driven; reliant on donors, volunteers and sponsors in local communities nationwide to power the wish granting engine.
“More than any other time in Make-A-Wish history, we understand the importance of these wish experiences,” said David Williams, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish America. “We have seen from studies that wishes can have significant effects on a child. Thanks to the generosity of many, 300,000 wish kids – and counting – have had the opportunity to be transformed by a wish.”
To commemorate the milestone, Make-A-Wish has selected 30 individuals to represent the countless others who have had their lives changed forever by playing a part in granting wishes. The individuals – including wish kids, doctors, social workers, donors, sponsors and volunteers – give a glimpse into the ever-growing network of people who make wishes possible. Testimonials and stories can be seen at wish.org/300kwishes.
“We’re not stopping at 300,000 wishes because there are more lives to be changed. Right now, we grant a wish on average every 34 minutes somewhere in the country, which is great, but our estimates show that a child gets diagnosed with a qualifying condition on average every 20 minutes,” Williams said. “Our vision is to bring the life-changing effects of a wish to every eligible child, and we won’t be satisfied until we do.”
To learn more about the different types of wishes Make-A-Wish grants, the organization’s history and how you can get involved, visit wish.org.