The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada is dedicated to providing children with life threatening illnesses the opportunity to realize their most heartfelt wish. The work we do is about dignity, about dreams come true and about quality of life for children coping with life threatening illnesses. It is about precious moments spent enjoying the special magic of a wish fulfilled and most importantly, it’s about smiles on the faces of very special children.
The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada is the authority on wish granting in our country. In 2009 we celebrated our 25th anniversary and with a quarter of a century of wish granting and 19,000 wishes behind us, we have fulfilled more wishes for children in Canada than all other wish granting agencies combined.
For a child whose wish is about to be granted, the pain and discomfort of the illness, and often harsh treatment regimes, somehow becomes more bearable. For many, the excitement of planning and anticipating their dream has a dramatic effect on their healing. These courageous youngsters often experience a renewed sense of energy and hope as they see a different kind of light at the end of the tunnel.
Wishes are also about moms, dads, brothers and sisters. They are about families and precious moments spent together planning, enjoying or reflecting on the special magic of a wish. It’s a temporary relief and much needed distraction from the endless procession of doctor visits, tests, reports, treatments and hospital stays.
What began in 1983, on the kitchen table of an inspired and committed volunteer has blossomed into a national organization with 12 chapters representing every province and territory. From humble beginnings, granting fewer than 20 wishes a year, The Foundation has established the capacity to fulfill approximately 1000 wishes annually; nearly 3 per day.
The BC and Yukon Chapter of the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada has now granted over 900 wishes. Thanks to the work of our volunteers and staff, and the generosity of our donors, we can celebrate our successes and continue to grow into the future. With ongoing support we will provide our valued service to the community for years to come.
Every child enjoys an enhanced quality of life including the experience of laughter, shared joy and memories with the important people in their lives.
The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada works with the community to provide children living with life-threatening illnesses the opportunity to realize their most heartfelt wish.
We will never say no to a wish child. We commit to use our talents, time and energy to realize our children’s wishes.
The high quality of our wishes will be maintained by paying attention to detail in meeting the child’s request and ensuring their satisfaction.
Volunteers and donors are integral to the Foundation’s work. We promise to use their resources wisely and with integrity of purpose.
We cherish the national character of our organization and will ensure our activities reflect the needs of communities across Canada.
As lay persons we will establish and maintain a complementary working relationship with the medical community.
We will conduct our activities with a high degree of professionalism, integrity and compassion at all levels.
Staff are critical partners in the work of the Foundation. We endeavour to create a supportive environment that promotes open discussion, personal development and satisfaction. We will treat each other with care, compassion and understanding that we extend to others outside the Foundation.
We remember our beginnings with respect and will uphold our grass root heritage, never losing sight of the love, compassion and dedication to children that makes us The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada.
How do children qualify for a wish?
Any child residing in Canada between the ages of three and seventeen who has been diagnosed with life threatening illness qualifies for a wish. This illness must be verified by the child’s treating physician.
How are children referred for wishes?
Most referrals come from parents, family members or the network of doctors, nurses and social workers engaged with the child. Referrals can also come from child-life specialists, friends, the potential wish child; other wish families, community or support organizations, school teachers or caregivers.
How much does a wish cost?
Wishes vary in expense by virtue of their variety and complexity. For example, a child’s desire to meet Mickey Mouse generally involves transportation and accommodations for the entire family as well as meals and expenses. In addition, any necessary medical expenses such as wheelchairs, respirators and even medical attendants are covered.
How much does The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada spend on administration costs?
Administration costs are necessary to run a national organization; however, The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada is committed to keeping these costs to a minimum. Hard-working volunteers across the country make it possible for the Foundation to keep costs as low as 15% of revenue.
Who decides what the child’s wish will be?
The wish truly belongs to the child. Their family becomes involved in the discussions and they are able to focus together on the anticipation of a happy experience.
Who participates in the wish?
The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada believes that the wish should truly be a family experience. It is important for wish children to share their memories and experiences with parents and siblings.
What are the most popular wish requests?
Our most popular wishes include: travel, entertainment centers, computer systems and meeting celebrities.