Josie referred Jade (pictured) for her wish to go to Disneyland.
"At St. Joseph's, the story of Chris’ wish to be a motorcycle officer in 1980 and the history of Make-A-Wish is well documented in the hallways of the hospital,” Josie said.
Now, 16 years later, Josie has referred 192 children, watching the entire wish process take place first-hand.
“My sister's nephew qualified, and he wished to go to the zoo. Many thought that was a small wish, but I was lucky enough to be invited to be part of his day and Make-A-Wish Arizona truly made it a magical experience for him and his family.
“That day was all about him. Everyone involved could see how special he felt,” she said.
For Josie, the best part of referring kids is giving them something to look forward to, something they personally select.
“One little girl had a notebook where she wrote down ideas for her wish and she brought it to clinic all the time,” she said.
“I had another child whose family initially declined to be referred as they felt it should go to another family who could otherwise not afford to travel,” she continued. “I explained the purpose of a wish to them, then about a week later the child asked if we could talk about his wish as he and his family had decided to start the process.”
His wish, to tour a Canadian company that makes video games, was the first wish that company had granted.
“They went all out for him. He could not stop talking about his experience when he came back.”
Josie sees how a wish can bring a child happiness while they go through treatment and reconnect families, even after they return home.
“Being able to refer kids to Make-A-Wish Arizona balances out some of the hard realities of my job. It's always fun to see what ideas the kids come up with once they start thinking of their wish.”