As Make-A-Wish South Dakota finishes its fiscal year, the organization announced today it granted 88 life-changing wishes to children with critical illnesses from September 1, 2018 – August 31, 2019. This is the highest number of wishes ever granted in South Dakota, and the second consecutive year of double-digit percentage growth in wishes.
“A wish experience creates an opportunity for hope and the ability to experience life beyond illness,” said Sue Salter, President and CEO of Make-A-Wish South Dakota. “In the fight against a critical illness, each wish serves as a catalyst for renewed strength and encouragement for every child and family on their journey.”
Make-A-Wish serves children between the ages of 2 ½ and 18 who are battling a critical illness. A dedicated and active group of more than 260 volunteers across South Dakota play a key role in meeting with qualified children to determine their heartfelt wish.
Make-A-Wish South Dakota Board of Directors Chair Gina Hopkins also serves as an active wish-granting volunteer, and says nothing is more powerful than being part of a wish experience – for donors, volunteers, medical professionals and entire communities.
“A child’s imagination is at the heart of everything we accomplish together,” said Hopkins. “Along with that imagination comes the strength to be resilient, the strength to unify a community, the strength to find hope. A wish-come-true empowers and transforms the lives of anyone who plays a part.”
Every wish experience begins with a wish referral from a caring individual that is part of a child’s medical care team, parents or other relatives with in-depth medical knowledge of the child’s condition. Make-A-Wish South Dakota is on a quest to find and grant the wish of every eligible child in the state.
In addition to the wishes granted to South Dakota kids, the local chapter also provided five wish assists to kids from around the world whose wish was to travel to South Dakota. Those wishes allow the South Dakota chapter to assist the child’s home chapter in putting the details in place for a transformational wish experience.
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ABOUT MAKE-A-WISH SOUTH DAKOTA
Make-A-Wish® creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We are on a quest to bring every eligible child's wish to life, because a wish is an integral part of a child's treatment journey. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight a critical illness. Make-A-Wish South Dakota granted 88 wishes statewide this fiscal year and has granted 1,472 wishes since its founding in 1984. To qualify for a wish a child must be between the ages of 2 ½ and 18 and facing a critical illness. For more information about Make-A-Wish South Dakota, visit southdakota.wish.org.