SOUTH FLORIDA – 546 local children made a wish and had it come true during a recent 12-month period, thanks to Make-A-Wish Southern Florida and its legion of referral sources, donors and volunteers. The number is the most wishes ever granted in one fiscal year by the nonprofit organization and means a sick child’s dream came true every 16 hours, every day of the 2011-2012 campaign.
The Southern Florida chapter has now granted more 8,500 wishes to children who have life-threatening medical conditions since 1983.
“The wishes we grant bring happiness to the lives of children and the memories often provide inspiration to continue fighting against the medical problems that threaten their lives,” said Norm Wedderburn, president & CEO of Make-A-Wish Southern Florida.
Children’s requests usually fall into four categories: “I wish to be” (something), “I wish to meet” (someone), “I wish to go” (somewhere), and “I wish to have” (something). The entire family is included in the wish experience. Disney World (32%) is the most popular request, followed by travel (26%), shopping sprees (14%), meeting a celebrity (7%), and computers/electronics (4%). Wishes outside of these categories make up the remaining 17% of those granted, with the average cost of fulfillment being $5,000.