There’s no one answer to either question. But just in the last few weeks, I found out about two kids who answered in a way that meant something to them. They were inspired by an up-close perspective of what a wish can do.
Let’s start with Tra, a 9-year-old from Texas.
Last year, he took a break from his treatments for a hematologic disorder to go to his favorite theme park. I can tell that Tra had some deep thoughts about the trip, something beyond all the fun: He must’ve been inspired by all the volunteers and supporters who made his wish come true.
Tra decided that he wanted to help other kids like him. He wants to volunteer eventually, but his first step was to raise funds through a lemonade stand. If you watch his video, you’ll get a sense of the medical challenges he faces – and a great idea of how his wish changed the lives of his entire family.
And then there’s 10-year-old Lauren. She is planning her own 5k run to benefit Make-A-Wish.
Lauren’s inspiration to organize the Half Witt 5k comes from the memory of her cousin, Wyatt. He received a wish before passing away, and she remembers how he talked about how his wish taking him to his favorite place in the world.
“I want to help other kids have that same chance,” Lauren told her local newspaper. She is also showing some innovation by allowing virtual runners to participate so she can raise more funds.
What Their Efforts Mean
Two completely different kids found their path to helping others because something in their lives made them believe in helping others. Make-A-Wish is the common thread between them, one as a wish kid and the other the cousin of a wish kid. Each saw how they could start helping, right now. That is the lasting imprint of wishes in their lives - and for everyone who stands by their efforts.
Sometimes, wish kids don’t even wait until their wish is granted to show their generosity – they make giving the focus of their wish. Here are a few great stories about kids who used their wish to help others from building playgrounds to feeding the homeless.