A Snapshot of the Importance of Make-A-Wish® Volunteers
As a stay-at-home mom, Darcy took countless photos of her daughters, which resulted in a deep love for photography.
Darcy also feels a strong desire to give back to the local Hawaii community. Through volunteering with Make-A-Wish Hawaii, Darcy's philanthropic heart and passion for photography have intersected to help bring hope and joy – and timeless keepsakes – to wish kids and their families.
Following her first photo shoot, Darcy felt an immediate connection to Make-A-Wish and its mission. "I saw the impact I could have just by showing up for a couple of hours and pressing a button on my camera," Darcy said.
As she took more photos for wish reveals, Darcy felt more inspired by how her photographs captured moments that convey how a wish has the unique ability to transform a child's life. Darcy points to her photo shoot capturing wish kid Hannah and her family surfing as some of her favorite photographs. "They show a child looking triumphant. To me, they show the all-encompassing power of a wish," Darcy said.
Hannah's photo shoot has personal significance for Darcy as well, given her daughter Julia, who is also a photographer, helped take the photos. Julia has since joined Darcy for other surfing wish photo shoots. "Jackie will shoot in the water and I will shoot from land," Darcy said.
For Darcy, the fact that her daughters have followed in her footsteps to volunteer for Make-A-Wish is an affirmation of the special relationship between a parent and a child. These priceless mother-daughter experiences have helped her forge emotional bonds with mothers of wish kids.
"[One wish] mom called me [after a photo shoot], and she was near tears," Darcy said. "She said, 'I want you to know how much this means to us.' I was on the other end of the phone and I started to cry. Together, on the phone, we were crying. As a mom, I felt so many emotions for her."
Nearly 40,000 volunteers across the U.S. and its territories help Make-A-Wish grant tens of thousands of wishes each year. Given her experience has been so personally rewarding, Darcy actively invites others to learn about how they can support Make-A-Wish.
"Make-A-Wish has my heart," Darcy said. "We can all give something – either a donation or our time. This is what I do, and you can do this too. And I would be so grateful if you did."