What is your vision?
The vision of the Make-A-Wish Foundation is that people everywhere will share the power of a wish®.
How did the Make-A-Wish Foundation begin?
In 1980, a 7-year-old Phoenix, Arizona boy with leukemia inspired the founding of Make-A-Wish Foundation. He wanted to be a police officer. A group of officers from the Arizona Department of Public Safety granted his wish by giving him a custom-made uniform, helmet, badge, and even a helicopter ride! The young boy’s delight in having his wish granted inspired the group to form an organization which would grant special wishes of other children.
How are you structured?
In 1983, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America was founded to charter local chapters throughout the United States and its territories. Today the Foundation is the largest wish-granting charity in the world, with 65 chapters in the U.S. and its territories. Each chapter raises and spends its own funds, serving the children in its own territory. Each chapter also hosts families from other states visiting locally.
When did your chapter start?
The Utah chapter was incorporated in 1985. It was the 42nd chapter in the network and serves the entire state of Utah.
How many wishes are granted?
Last year we granted 160 wishes to Utah children. We also host additional wishes for children from other states visiting Utah for a special wish experience. Nationally, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has granted over 180,000 wishes, and currently grants a wish every 40 minutes.
How old must a child be to have a wish granted?
To be eligible for a wish, a child must be between 2.5 and 17 years of age at the time of referral.
What children are eligible?
Children who have been diagnosed by their physician as having an illness that is life-threatening, and who are between 2.5 and 17 years of age, are eligible for a wish. More detailed guidelines on eligibility are provided to medical professionals on request. Make-A-Wish grants wishes regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic status. No eligible child has ever been denied a wish or placed on a waiting list.
Who makes a wish referral?
Approximately half of all wish referrals are initiated by healthcare professionals and half are started by friends, relatives, and other wish families. Requests can be made by anyone. However, if the initial call comes from someone other than the parents or guardians, we ask that the parents or guardians be encouraged to call directly on behalf of their own child.
How does someone make a wish referral?
To refer a child, call our Program Services department at (801) 262-WISH (9474), or click here.
Does the family’s financial status matter?
No, economic background does not affect whether a child is eligible for a wish.
What if a family does not want publicity?
We respect and protect a child’s and family’s right to privacy. Publicity will never be sought without permission, and a family may decline publicity at any time.
Do you sponsor chain letters?
The Make-A-Wish Foundation does not participate in chain letter or other direct solicitation wishes.
What other services does Make-A-Wish Foundation of Utah provide?
Wish families are invited to gatherings and events throughout the year. This includes a summer social, sporting and cultural events, and other parties for all ages. Members of our “Make-A-Wish Family” are invited to these opportunities for five years following referral. Some of these gatherings are organized by the Foundation; others are sponsored by caring individuals and companies in our community.