Husband and wife volunteer duo Scott and Dorothy Cornell are a team all their own, devoting their time, together, to sharing the power of a wish at events all across Michigan. They both got their start with Make-A-Wish® Michigan on the Wish-A-Mile® Bicycle Tour, and participating in it soon became an honored tradition for the pair.
"In 2014 I rode in the WAM 300 for the first time," Dorothy said. "The ride was amazing! The volunteers were spectacular during the entire event. The volunteers on the WAM ride work tirelessly through the entire three days and always have a smile. Those volunteers inspired me to be a volunteer for other Make-A-Wish events."
Dorothy became interested in Make-A-Wish Michigan when Scott started riding in WAM in 2011. After a few years of witnessing the excitement of the Make-A-Wish experience, she decided to join the team, too.
"Each year I would drop him off and pick him up," Dorothy said. "Seeing the smiles on the faces of wish children made me want to be a part of the event."
Dorothy and Scott give their time for every Make-A-Wish Michigan event that they can. They staff tables, helped at both Walk for Wishes® - Southeast Michigan and Walk for Wishes - West Michigan for the last two years and still ride the WAM 300. They have also served as escorts for a wish kid marching in a parade, and last year, they volunteered at Wish Ball - Southeast Michigan. They are relatively new to the field of wish granting, but they bring as much enthusiasm to granting wishes as they do to every other part of their volunteer experience.
"Meeting wish children and hearing about their wishes is one of my favorite things," Dorothy said. "The smiles of the children and their parents, how they speak so excitedly about their wish experience and/or upcoming wish - they're truly amazing!"
As a pair, Scott and Dorothy always show up to support wish families and other volunteers. Though they serve together as a team, both at events and in granting wishes, their Make-A-Wish Michigan community extends far beyond just themselves.
"We love to serve and find that when we do serve, we actually receive more love, appreciation and joy than we are able to give," Dorothy said. "Meeting the wish children and their families and being able to see their hope, strength and joy is a real blessing [and] inspiration to us."
Scott and Dorothy make a point of balancing their volunteer work with Make-A-Wish Michigan and the other important parts of their life. Both have jobs, and whenever possible, they spend their free time with their children and grandchildren. They also stay involved in their church and enjoy outdoor activities, such as hiking, kayaking and camping. But in the spring, they always make time to train for WAM 300, and in the meantime, they remain dedicated to volunteering.
"Make-A-Wish has become a passion for us," Dorothy said. "We enjoy meeting some very special children and hearing their stories. One of the best parts is talking with those who have had their wish granted. To see them light up as they relive the wish as they tell us about it is pretty amazing."