Sharing The Magical Power Of A Wish
By Siana Austin Hunt, president and CEO, Make-A-Wish-Hawaii
We can’t cure the very conditions that bring Hawaii keiki to our doorstep, but we can offer the uplifting power of a wish. We grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.
It is a life-changing journey that starts with our volunteers, who meet with our wish kids to help them discover their one true wish, encouraging them to let their imaginations run wild.
This is when the magic begins!
This ray of light shines bright in the days leading up to their wish. Suddenly, life is not centered on their medical battles. Instead, wish kids are counting down to their dream destination, like Apryl from Kauai, who recently traveled to Paris to fulfill her dream of experiencing French culture. Or they are looking forward to a remodeled backyard — the wish of Hawaii island boy Dominique, who wanted his own radio-controlled raceway track. Or they are anticipating the reveal of their school’s new 3D printer — Jin’s inspiring wish to give back to his fellow students at Roosevelt High School in Honolulu.
After the wish is granted, the experience stays with wish families as a source of strength. It is truly the gift that keeps on giving.
Our first wish was granted to a Hilo boy in 1984. Since then, we’ve granted close to 1,000 wishes to Hawaii children and close to 100 wishes in 2014 alone. But each year, Hawaii sees more than 100 newly diagnosed keiki. We are still strides away from our vision of reaching every eligible child. As we strive toward this goal, our need for funding and volunteers multiplies.
As we embark on our annual Season of Wishes, we urge you to give the gift of a wish this holiday season. In November, the Macy’s Believe letter-writing campaign kicks off: Make-a-Wish-Hawaii will receive $1 for every letter to Santa that Macy’s receives. Also, our Jingle Rock Run family-friendly 5K will hit the streets Dec. 21 in Kakaako.
Please join us this season to help Share the Power of a Wish! For information, please visit hawaii.wish.org/ways-to-help.