Story by Hannah Rabalais. Photos courtesy of Make-A-Wish North Texas.
In light of COVID-19 and the most recent shelter in place orders, most nonprofits in North Texas are making game-time decisions to either cancel or re-scheduled their events. Spring in North Texas is a very busy season for nonprofits and it is typically a time the community comes together to show support for many local organizations. Despite these challenges surrounding COVID-19, one nonprofit is on a mission to still bring joy and hope during these uncertain times.
Make-A-Wish North Texas creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses in 161 counties across the North Texas region. Like many nonprofits, Make-A-Wish North Texas has pivoted quickly, and has now transformed its Walk for Wishes into WEB WALK 2020. “Wishes are waiting, and we will still be walking. We may not be together in person, but we are clearly united in our cause.” said Scotty Landry, CEO of Make-A-Wish North Texas. “Taking our Walk For Wishes virtual will let our community get involved from their homes so that together, we can ensure wishes will continue to come true for children facing critical illnesses.” Many families are sheltering in place in North Texas, it’s the perfect excuse to get outside, practice safe social distancing, and help raise money so that dreams can come true for children. To register for WEB WALK 2020, visit WalkForWishesDFW.org, set up your team fundraising pages and come together with the community on March 28th by tuning into Facebook @MakeAWishNT.
Nationally, Make-A-Wish has had to postpone 970 wishes, including 58 in North Texas due to recent travel restrictions which have impacted 77% of their wishes. The staff is working on creative solutions to lift everyone’s spirits during this scary and unprecedented time. In the coming days, Make-A-Wish is rolling out several new social media campaigns to encourage children waiting for their wish to be granted. The first campaign that Make-A-Wish launched is the “Messages of Hope” campaign. “Messages of Hope” is giving Make-A-Wish supporters and the community another fun, easy way to help children with critical illnesses without needing to leave the house during this time of sheltering in place. Through “Messages of Hope,” Make-A-Wish invites the public to spread hope and anticipation by writing, recording or photographing themselves delivering messages of encouragement for wish kids waiting for wishes impacted by COVID-19.
In total, Make-A-Wish has granted more than 330,000 wishes to children in the U.S. and its territories; more than 15,800 wishes in 2019 alone. It is because of generous donors, dedicated volunteers and valuable partners in the medical community that each wish becomes a reality. For more information about Make-A-Wish North Texas, visit ntx.wish.org.
If this story has inspired you to support the North Texas Nonprofit community, visit our How to Support Nonprofits During Social Isolation page to learn how you can get involved!