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Wish Facts

Wish Impact

According to the results of a 2011 Wish Impact Study that surveyed wish parents, health professionals, and Make-A-Wish® volunteers, a wish come true empowers children with life-threatening medical conditions to fight harder against their illnesses. When wish kids are granted a wish, they get more than just a great experience for a day, two days, or a week. That experience improves the quality of life for them and their entire family.

Health professionals treating them say the wish experience is an important adjunct to medical treatment, and they observe their patients feel better and comply more readily with treatment protocols when they experience their wish come true. And the community volunteers who grant wishes say the wish granting process heightens both their ability to see the best in others, and their commitment to actively help more people in need.

Improved Health Status

  •  Health professionals who treat wish kids, including nurses and doctors, overwhelmingly believe that the wish experience can improve a wish kids’ physical health.
  •  Most health professionals say a wish come true has the potential to be a positive turning point in the child’s battle for health.
  •  Parents and volunteers observe that a wish come true makes kids feel stronger and more energetic.
  •  Wish kids are more willing to comply with difficult, but vital, treatment regimens.
  •  Parents and medical professionals alike describe the wish experience as a frequent turning point in wish kids’ battles for health.

A combined 89 percent of doctors, nurses and health professionals surveyed say they believe a wish experience can influence wish kids' physical health.* 

Enhanced State of Mind

  •  Children and their parents alike experience more happiness and less fear in their lives.
  •  Children are less isolated from friends, and feel a return of self-confidence that comes with feeling “normal” again.
  •  They are empowered to take back control of their lives, and to keep up the fight against their life-threatening medical conditions.
  •  Parents say their family units – often strained to the limit by stresses of the illnesses – are repaired and strengthened through the shared experience of the wish process.

Ninety-nine percent of parents reported that the wish experience gave their children increased feelings of happiness and 96 percent said that the wish experience strengthened their families. *

Strengthened Communities

  • Volunteers feel an increased sense of compassion and desire to help others in their community.
  • They feel a renewed faith in humanity. 
  • They trust others more and feel more optimistic about the future.
  • They feel a greater long-term commitment to philanthropy.

Ninety-five percent of community volunteers reported an increased sense of compassion and 84 percent felt an increased faith in humanity. *

* “Wish Impact Study Results – Second Phase: Jan. – Aug. 2011” (consolidated results), Nov. 2, 2011.


Darrien, 7, neurofibromatosis

Darrien, 7, neurofibromatosis

Michigan Wish Facts

  • Make-A-Wish® Michigan creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses
  • Since 1984, Make-A-Wish Michigan has granted more than 10,000 wishes. This year, our goal is to reach about 450 kids
  • While doctors provide the medicine, Make-A-Wish Michigan supplies the magical experience that provides a positive and life-changing experience. In fact, a recent Make-A-Wish® America survey found that 97 percent of parents said the wish experience strengthened their families
  • There are more than 800 medically eligible Michigan children dreaming, planning and awaiting their wishes
  • The average value of a Michigan wish is $10,000, and while each child’s wish is truly unique, the majority of wishes fall into one of four categories: I wish to go, I wish to meet, I wish to have or I wish to be
  • More than 85 percent of Michigan wishes require air travel, making it a critical – and costly – resource
  • An eligible wish child must be referred between the ages of 2 ½ and 18 and live in Michigan. The child’s medical condition must be confirmed in writing by his or her primary care physician, and the child cannot have received a previous wish from any other wish-granting organization
  • Make-A-Wish Michigan is one of 60 chapters of the national organization, Make-A-Wish America. Make-A-Wish also has 41 international affiliates. More than 480,000 wishes have been granted worldwide
  • Headquartered in Brighton with an office in Grand Rapids, Make-A-Wish Michigan serves families in all 83 counties in Michigan 


Make-A-Wish® Michigan
7600 Grand River Avenue
Suite 175
Brighton, MI 48114
(734) 994-8620
Toll Free Michigan Only (800) 622-9474
Make-A-Wish® Michigan, Grand Rapids Office
648 Monroe Ave NW
Suite 104
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 363-4607
Toll Free (877) 631-9474