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Great Kindness in Small Package

Dana with Dominic and kids
As much as a written story tries to capture the joy of a wish-come-true, it just can’t compare to seeing a wish come true right before your very eyes. In my decade working at Make-A-Wish, I have had the privilege of witnessing many wishes come to life firsthand. But four-year-old Dominic’s wish will stay with me for a long time. You see, Dominic wished for a shopping spree but not entirely for himself.

Jun 30, 2014

Great Kindness in Small Package

Dana with Dominic and kids
As much as a written story tries to capture the joy of a wish-come-true, it just can’t compare to seeing a wish come true right before your very eyes. In my decade working at Make-A-Wish, I have had the privilege of witnessing many wishes come to life firsthand. But four-year-old Dominic’s wish will stay with me for a long time. You see, Dominic wished for a shopping spree but not entirely for himself.

Jun 18, 2014

Wish Wednesday: Summertime and the Livin's Easy

Abby on the beach
Time to bring out the beach towels and bathing suits – summer is finally here! And here at Make-A-Wish®, that means the height of wish travel season has begun. From beach vacations and swimming with dolphins to Orlando theme parks and Hawaii get-a-ways – our wish kids truly know how to dive into the summer sun as they forget about their illnesses and experience their most heartfelt wishes-come-true.

Jun 18, 2014

Wish Wednesday: Summertime and the Livin's Easy

Abby on the beach
Time to bring out the beach towels and bathing suits – summer is finally here! And here at Make-A-Wish®, that means the height of wish travel season has begun. From beach vacations and swimming with dolphins to Orlando theme parks and Hawaii get-a-ways – our wish kids truly know how to dive into the summer sun as they forget about their illnesses and experience their most heartfelt wishes-come-true.

Jun 13, 2014

Celebrating Renewed Family Bonds

Brendan and his dad after shooting off the fireworks at Walt Disney World
When we talk about wishes, we often think of the positive, lasting effects they have on the wish kids. But often times, the wish has a life-changing impact on siblings and parents, too. For families, who are often separated by hospital stays and doctor appointments, the wish experience brings them back together again. Whether it be a day, two days or a week, the wish gives them a time to enjoy each other's company, laugh, have fun and not think about the stresses of an illness. In honor of Father's Day weekend, let's take a look at special wishes that help renew family bonds.

Jun 13, 2014

Celebrating Renewed Family Bonds

Brendan and his dad after shooting off the fireworks at Walt Disney World
When we talk about wishes, we often think of the positive, lasting effects they have on the wish kids. But often times, the wish has a life-changing impact on siblings and parents, too. For families, who are often separated by hospital stays and doctor appointments, the wish experience brings them back together again. Whether it be a day, two days or a week, the wish gives them a time to enjoy each other's company, laugh, have fun and not think about the stresses of an illness. In honor of Father's Day weekend, let's take a look at special wishes that help renew family bonds.

Celebrating Life with Wish Kid & Past Make-A-Wish Intern Erika Moul

Erika and family in Hawaii
Did you hear? There was a worldwide celebration – a Celebration of Life. Millions of survivors united this past Sunday to show the world what life after cancer looks like.

Every first Sunday in June marks National Cancer Survivors Day (NCSD) – “a celebration for those who have survived, an inspiration for those recently diagnosed, a gathering of support for families and an outreach to the community.” According to the NCSD Foundation, nearly 14 million people are living with a history of cancer, and some of those survivors include our resilient and courageous wish kids.

Jun 02, 2014

Celebrating Life with Wish Kid & Past Make-A-Wish Intern Erika Moul

Erika and family in Hawaii
Did you hear? There was a worldwide celebration – a Celebration of Life. Millions of survivors united this past Sunday to show the world what life after cancer looks like.

Every first Sunday in June marks National Cancer Survivors Day (NCSD) – “a celebration for those who have survived, an inspiration for those recently diagnosed, a gathering of support for families and an outreach to the community.” According to the NCSD Foundation, nearly 14 million people are living with a history of cancer, and some of those survivors include our resilient and courageous wish kids.

A New Chapter of Life Unfolds for Graduating Wish Kids

Graduating wish kids with Pittsburgh Pirates President Frank Coonelly. Make-A-Wish President and CEO Judi Stone, Chief Operating Officer Ann Hohn and Development Coordinator Andrea Ballas at the Kurt R. Weiss Reception at PNC Park
While reading the goals, dreams and stories of the 50 graduating wish kids who recently applied for our chapter's Kurt R. Weiss Scholarship, I couldn't help thinking of a quote from American author William Arthur Ward -- “If you can imagine it, you can achieve it. If you can dream it, you can become it.” The diagnosis of cancer or a life-threatening illness could be a reason for anyone to give up. However, these wish kids scholarship recipients wouldn't let their diagnoses define them. For many, their wish experience gave them a “can-do” attitude, and inspired many of them to take up challenges they hadn't thought possible. In the coming weeks, these kids will be graduating from Pennsylvania and West Virginia high schools, ready to start a new chapter in their life and conquer a new challenge -- college.

May 28, 2014

A New Chapter of Life Unfolds for Graduating Wish Kids

Graduating wish kids with Pittsburgh Pirates President Frank Coonelly. Make-A-Wish President and CEO Judi Stone, Chief Operating Officer Ann Hohn and Development Coordinator Andrea Ballas at the Kurt R. Weiss Reception at PNC Park
While reading the goals, dreams and stories of the 50 graduating wish kids who recently applied for our chapter's Kurt R. Weiss Scholarship, I couldn't help thinking of a quote from American author William Arthur Ward -- “If you can imagine it, you can achieve it. If you can dream it, you can become it.” The diagnosis of cancer or a life-threatening illness could be a reason for anyone to give up. However, these wish kids scholarship recipients wouldn't let their diagnoses define them. For many, their wish experience gave them a “can-do” attitude, and inspired many of them to take up challenges they hadn't thought possible. In the coming weeks, these kids will be graduating from Pennsylvania and West Virginia high schools, ready to start a new chapter in their life and conquer a new challenge -- college.

Wish Wednesday: Wish Kid Jared Fulfills Wish to Visit Pearl Harbor

Jared and USS Missouri
With Memorial Day right around the corner, we thought of the perfect wish to share with you: 13-year-old Jared, a military history buff, recently returned from his wish-come-true as he toured Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

May 21, 2014

Wish Wednesday: Wish Kid Jared Fulfills Wish to Visit Pearl Harbor

Jared and USS Missouri
With Memorial Day right around the corner, we thought of the perfect wish to share with you: 13-year-old Jared, a military history buff, recently returned from his wish-come-true as he toured Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

Apr 02, 2014

Wish Wednesday: Why Our Family Supports Make-A-Wish

Marilyn Noll - I'm an air miles donor
Our family knows through personal experience that one good way to give support to young people with life threatening illnesses is to support Make-A-Wish. We well understand that by donating travel miles to Make-A-Wish, we can enable these young people to experience an exciting and inspiring adventure of their own choice—and give hope and joy to them and their families.

Apr 02, 2014

Wish Wednesday: Why Our Family Supports Make-A-Wish

Marilyn Noll - I'm an air miles donor
Our family knows through personal experience that one good way to give support to young people with life threatening illnesses is to support Make-A-Wish. We well understand that by donating travel miles to Make-A-Wish, we can enable these young people to experience an exciting and inspiring adventure of their own choice—and give hope and joy to them and their families.

1,000 wishes. 1,000 memories. 1,000 amazing, brave children.

Bridget with family, friends, Kohl's and Make-A-Wish staff
We hit an amazing milestone in the Northern WV Regional Office last month. We granted our 1,000th wish to an inspiring girl from Clarksburg, WV. Wishes have been granted in the northern 32 counties of West Virginia since 1989 and on February 27, 2014, we hit that magic number – 1,000.

Mar 12, 2014

1,000 wishes. 1,000 memories. 1,000 amazing, brave children.

Bridget with family, friends, Kohl's and Make-A-Wish staff
We hit an amazing milestone in the Northern WV Regional Office last month. We granted our 1,000th wish to an inspiring girl from Clarksburg, WV. Wishes have been granted in the northern 32 counties of West Virginia since 1989 and on February 27, 2014, we hit that magic number – 1,000.

Feb 27, 2014

Austin and Layla: Witnessing the Power of a Wish

Austin, his puppy Layla, his family and the Edinboro and Make-A-Wish crew
Austin, 16, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma about a year ago and has had a long, hard year of chemo treatments and the amputation of his foot due to complications from his illness. Near the end of his treatments, he realized what was missing…he needed a companion, someone to help him through his recovery. He needed a best friend. He needed a dog.

Feb 27, 2014

Austin and Layla: Witnessing the Power of a Wish

Austin, his puppy Layla, his family and the Edinboro and Make-A-Wish crew
Austin, 16, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma about a year ago and has had a long, hard year of chemo treatments and the amputation of his foot due to complications from his illness. Near the end of his treatments, he realized what was missing…he needed a companion, someone to help him through his recovery. He needed a best friend. He needed a dog.

Feb 26, 2014

Wish Wednesday: National Tell a Fairytale Day

Aidan Becomes a Knight
Most of the fairytales we've all heard and know are found only in storybooks or the movies. However, in honor of National Tell a Fairytale Day, we have a few stories about some of our wish kids who have lived their own fairytales.

Feb 26, 2014

Wish Wednesday: National Tell a Fairytale Day

Aidan Becomes a Knight
Most of the fairytales we've all heard and know are found only in storybooks or the movies. However, in honor of National Tell a Fairytale Day, we have a few stories about some of our wish kids who have lived their own fairytales.

About this Blog

This blog brings Make-A-Wish Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia to you -- sharing first-person stories of the Make-A-Wish experience and the impact of a wish from the perspectives of wish families, volunteers and staff. This blog highlights wishes come true and the special people in Pennsylvania and West Virginia helping to make magical experiences possible for every eligible child.

Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Inc.
The Gulf Tower
707 Grant Street, 37th Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1938
(412) 471-9474
Toll Free (800) 676-9474
Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Southern West Virginia Office
888 Oakwood Centre
Suite 330
Charleston, WV 25314
(304) 342-9474
Toll Free (800) 664-9474
Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Northern West Virginia Office
913 Canyon Road
Morgantown, WV 26508
(304) 292-5600
Toll Free (888) 808-9474
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