Take this letter, for example.
"This is Sydnee. I got a call yesterday and found out my wish was approved, and that Sierra was approved to come with me. I wanted to thank you guys so much because I don’t think anyone understands how much this means to us. It’s like a dream come true. I really do appreciate all you’re doing for me, it’s wonderful and feels like I’m dreaming."
Sydnee, who has a life-threatening heart condition, hasn't even been on her wish yet, but just by her letter, you know that just having the opportunity to have a wish is impacting her life. That's the beauty of Make-A-Wish. It helps give kids and their families a much needed break from the stresses of dealing with doctor appointments and hospital stays and helps them focus on something positive, even before their wish begins. According to a 2011 impact study commissioned by Make-A-Wish® America, 99 percent of parents reported that the wish experience gave their children increased feelings of happiness and 92 percent saw their children experience re-empowerment to take back the ability to make decisions in their lives.
A wish can even impact a child physically. A combined 89 percent of nurses, doctors, social workers and child life specialists surveyed say they believe that the wish experience can influence wish kids’ physical health. Just ask Meghan, who received her wish for a pool when she was battling cancer as a nine-year-old kid. Now 24, Meghan is helping to make other kids' wishes come true.
"I was determined to conquer this illness because I wanted to swim in my pool," said Meghan. "I was not going to let my illness keep me from my wish!"
For 30 years, our chapter has been giving kids like Syndee and Meghan a reason to hope and look past the dark days of worry and illness. Here's to 30 more!