“When we started Royal JBS it was really small, but now the tournament has a 20-person volunteer committee with 60 people helping out on the day of the event,” said Mark. “Many of our returning golfers personally donate items for our raffle and we couldn’t do any of this without the support of our donors and volunteers.”
Together, Mark and Todd teamed up in 2002 to organize a golf tournament that raised $400 its first year. Now, they are proud to have raised more than $750,000 in the past 18 years – including $126,000 in 2019 - to grant wishes for Arizona children with critical illnesses.
“Our goal is to make it a fun event and to raise as much money as we can for wish kids in Arizona,” said Todd. “We don’t receive huge donations. In fact, our fundraising is made up of many people who give small amounts, but I think this shows the impact multiple people can have when they come together for a great cause.”
One highlight for Todd is meeting the wish kids and families, who share their wish stories with the golfers and volunteers at every event.
“Royal JBS is different than other corporate tournaments here in the Valley thanks to our wish kid ambassadors who attend,” he said. “We like to make our tournament not only a fun experience, but also a way to share wish kids’ stories so we can educate participants on how they each make a difference.”
Mark, who also is a member of the Make-A-Wish Arizona Wishmakers Council, believes building these relationships is essential for community support.
“I’m lucky enough to choose the cause I support because my kids are grown and healthy, but seeing how one sick kid impacts the whole family is the reason why I decided to get involved,” Mark said.
Both Mark and Todd are excited to see how their efforts can continue to support future Arizona wishes.
“Working with Make-A-Wish Arizona provided an opportunity for us to learn more about the impact of a wish,” said Todd. “We want to be able to use these events to increase our impact so we can grant even more wishes.”
The 19th Annual Royal JBS Golf Invitational will be held on Saturday April 25th, 2020 at the Arizona Biltmore Golf Club. If anyone is interested in participating, donating raffle/auction items or volunteering, please contact Mark Dellis at firstname.lastname@example.org.