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Make-A-Wish thanks sponsors, supporters

THE Make-A-Wish Foundation of Guam and the CNMI held a donor-appreciation mixer to thank sponsors and supporters for helping grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions.

The event took place at the Naked Fish Bar & Grill on Wednesday evening during which the top 15 individuals and companies that have contributed to the foundation were honored.

“This allows us to thank all the donors, sponsors, supporters of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Guam and the CNMI,” said Kanae Quinn, foundation board member in the CNMI.

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Since its inception in Guam and the CNMI in 1988, the foundation has granted 270 wishes, she said.

“All were made possible by generous individual donors and companies in the community,” Quinn added.

Those who were honored on Wednesday included DFS Saipan Limited, Hyatt Regency Saipan, Imperial Pacific, Marianas Variety, Triple J Wholesale, Bank of Guam, The Shack, Gold’s Gym, Joeten Enterprises, Bridge Capital, Pacific Islands Club, Joeten Motors, Naked Fish Bar & Grill, and Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation physician Dr. Beth Kohnen.

According to Eric Tydingco, Guam and CNMI foundation chief executive officer, the event was their way of reaching out to the public with a message about the foundation’s mission of enriching the human experience with hope, strength and joy.

“We want to increase our referrals because we know there are more kids out there that are eligible. If they are eligible, we want to grant their wishes,” Tydingco said.

The foundation, he added, does not grant wishes only to children who are terminally ill.

“The term ‘life-threatening medical condition’ is a broad one. It does not need to be terminal, but a condition which severely affects a child’s life. A child’s life can become seriously disrupted because he or she has to undergo treatment. The normal schedule of a child or the normal upbringing that they would have is affected, though it does not necessarily result in a terminal illness.”

The foundation grants the wishes of children from two and a half years old to those under the age of 18, and who have been determined by a physician to have a life-threatening medical condition.

“The child’s physician makes the final determination of whether a child is medically eligible to receive a wish. Also, the child cannot have previously received a wish from another wish-granting organization,” Tydingco said.

Eleanor T. Cabrera, a CNMI foundation board member, said granting wishes to children has a positive impact on the patients and their family members.

“It is a game changer for the child. It helps them feel more positive, and they are encouraged to take their medicine and see their doctor. For the family members, it can be the first time in a long time they feel hope and joy because their child is happy,” Cabrera said.

“A wish granted affects the child, the parents, other family members, and all the volunteers and donors. Everyone is part of the wish and granting it is very uplifting and makes our community stronger.”

Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/97275-make-a-wish-thanks-sponsors-supporters

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