DENVER — The impact of COVID-19 is being felt by everyone, including children waiting for a life changing wish from the Make-A-Wish Foundation. But there are ways you can still help them in the midst of this pandemic.
“Eighty percent of our kids that come through Make-A-Wish wish to go, to go somewhere, so it’s definitely had a big impact,” Make-A-Wish Colorado President and CEO Scott Dishong told Denver7.
Dishong explained that nearly all wishes have been placed on hold as a result of stay-at-home orders, travel restrictions, and the fact that many children involved in wishes have or have had issues with their immune systems.
“Typically our pipeline, what we call the number of kids waiting for wishes, is around 300-350 kids and I would say that’s gonna start getting closer to 400 kids, if not more, waiting for wishes,” he said.
One of those hundreds of kids is 6-year-old Zack Montgomery of Steamboat Springs.
“He wanted to ride a horse in Hawaii,” his mom, Nicole, explained to Denver7.
Zack fought cancer, a tumor on his kidney, through seven months of chemotherapy. His wish was supposed to take place in early April, but has been put on hold.
“We will go whenever they can make it possible,” Montgomery said.
But in the mean time, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has come up with a way to help keep the spirits of these wish kids up. They’ve started the “Messages of Hope” campaign, asking people to send photos or videos of well-wishes and support to wish kids across the country.
“Hope is an essential part of a wish and recovery at any time, and I think with the stress and anxiety with this crisis it’s even more important,” Dishong said.
You can submit your messages, photos, or videos in the comments section of this story on the Denver7 Facebook page. Additionally, those messages can be submitted via https://wish.org/messages-of-hope or posting to social media using the tag @MakeAWish and the hashtag #WishesAreWaiting.