Wishes at Work

Small businesses play a big role in granting wishes in Rhode Island through the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Massachusetts and Rhode Island

While philanthropic giving may not be top of mind for Rhode Islandsmall businesses during these challenging economic times, the benefits are significant.  The Make-A-Wish Foundation® ofMassachusetts andRhode Island relies on businesses and individuals to grant wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions.  A partnership with the Foundation not only brings hope, strength and joy to a deserving child, but helps businesses reach their corporate social responsibility goals and boost employee morale.

This effort is exemplified by the Physical Therapists and Physical Therapist Assistants of Rhode Island Fundraising Campaign, now in its second year.  Last year, twenty-nine Rhode Island Physical Therapy clinics and schools joined together to raise awareness and funds for the Foundation.  Coordinated by Kevin Silvia of Performance Physical Therapy, the campaign has raised over $8,200.00.

“I have always participated in fundraising events, but during the holiday season I wanted to do something that could make a bigger impact on someone’s life,” said Silvia.  “Partnering with the Make-A-Wish Foundation allowed Rhode Island’s physical therapy community to come together for a common goal, and because of the enormous support and enthusiasm from the businesses, the employees and our clients, this has become an annual event.”

Thanks to the generosity of the campaign participants, Aidan, an avid Star Wars fan, had his wish to visit Walt Disney World® to attend Star Wars Weekend granted. Although he has been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, a heart disease, it hasn’t affected his joyful disposition, which was on full display when he was invited to be a participant in the Star Wars parade and marched through the park side-by-side with his favorite characters.

Aidan’s wish came true thanks to the generosity of Rhode Islandsmall businesses.  Financial support from the community is necessary to grant the more than 80 eligible wishes each year. According to the Foundation’s most recent audit, over 80 percent of every dollar donated is directed to wishes, which cost an average of approximately $6,500 per wish. The funds that are generously donated by Rhode Islanders will help to grant wishes for children residing in Rhode Island. 

Supporting the Foundation benefits more than the wish child and his or her family.  Workplace Giving campaigns are a convenient, cost-effective option to improve morale and foster a sense of community.  Employers benefit from building a philanthropic partnership with the Foundation by aligning their business with a nationally recognized and trusted non-profit.  Through workplace giving campaigns, employees may choose to make payroll deductions, which are easy and convenient and may allow for employees to make a larger, more impactful gift.  Employers may consider offering a matching gift program as well to increase the impact made by their employees.

Other great ways to get involved with the Foundation include hosting a fundraising event, allowing employees to dress down in exchange for a donation to the Foundation through the Jeans for Wishes campaign and encouraging employees to volunteer.  Also, you may consider donating your unused airline miles to the Foundation.  Once these miles are donated, they do not expire.  This is especially helpful because 70% of wishes granted inMassachusettsandRhode Islandare travel wishes.

The Foundation’s vision is to grant wishes for every medically eligible child annually.  Get your business involved and help grant a wish of a Rhode Island child today!  For more information, please visit www.massri.wish.org, email rhodeisland@massri.wish.org or call 401-781-9474.

A special thank you to the physical therapy clinics and schools that participated in the campaign to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Massachusetts and Rhode Island – A Healing Hand Physical Therapy, Bristol County Physical Therapy & Sports Rehab, Community College of Rhode Island – Newport Campus, Excel Physical Therapy, Friendly Nursing Home, Lepre Physical Therapy, Lepre Paladin Physical Therapy, Liberty Physical Therapy, Matrix Physical Therapy, McVay Physical Therapy, Miriam Hospital, Muldowney Physical Therapy, Performance Physical Therapy, R.I. Rehabilitation, Steve Mignacca Physical Therapy, University of Rhode Island, Warwick Physical Therapy Institute and Womens Care.

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