Make-A-Wish is coming off its 40th anniversary during perhaps the toughest time to grant wishes.
The foundation is having trouble delivering wishes to ailing kids due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We have now 5,000 of this year’s wishes already indefinitely on hold,” said Make-A-Wish CEO Richard Davis. “So our kids are patiently waiting, sweet as they are, wondering when their wish will come about. And our job right now is to keep them inspired and excited for when the wish comes, in the meantime, going out and continue to raise funds and support in a window of time when we need the most.”
With more than 3.8 million laid-off workers applying for unemployment benefits last week, the U.S. economy slid further into a crisis that is becoming the most devastating since the 1930s. Because MAW has corporate partners like Macy’s, which has temporarily closed many of its stores and the WWE, which isn’t holding live events, the organization is learning to navigate through this new, uncertain reality.
To keep spirits up, the charity has introduced “Messages of Hope,” encouraging the public to record inspiring messages and upload them to social media while tagging Make-A-Wish. They’re also relying heavily on celebrities to post, and so far, stars like The Jonas Brothers, Gordon Ramsay, Jojo Siwa, Terry Crews and more have already participated.
Other big names like Ryan Reynolds and DJ Khaled have already personally video called some young people whose wishes were to meet them as part of a “wish enhancement” as they wait, something the charity hadn’t explored before.