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Wish Blog

Nov 21, 2019

November Volunteer of the Month, Nicole Shaheen

Nicole was Sarai's wish granter.
Growing up in Texas, Nicole Shaheen had a family friend who received a wish to go to Disneyland. She had no idea that this connection would one day lead to her involvement with Make-A-Wish Arizona.

“I saw the impact his wish experience had on both him and his parents,” said Nicole. “I’ve always had a passion for kids and when I was applying for internships and saw there was an opportunity at Make-A-Wish, I knew I wanted to be a part of the joy my friend’s wish gave to him before he passed.”

Nicole moved to Arizona to attend Grand Canyon University and pursue a degree in healthcare. While it was her internship with Make-A-Wish Arizona where she fell in love with the organization’s mission, it is her volunteer work that feeds her soul.

“It’s the best feeling to do a job that doesn’t feel like work. That’s how you know it’s a calling,” said Nicole. “I decided to become a volunteer wish granter because of my internship experience but the skills I’ve learned in this role will help me in my future career as a child life specialist.”

Since her volunteer training this summer, Nicole has already been a part of eight wishes.

“One of my first wishes was Christian’s wish to have a gaming computer,” she said. “That was so fun because the staff at GameStop contributed a lot to make his wish come true and we were able to be there with him all day.

Nicole helped with Christian's shopping spree wish.

“I recently granted Maximus’ wish for a Coco-themed party - his favorite movie - and we invited his whole family,” she continued. “He could only see lights and shadows at that time and he wasn’t responding to much, so I got a bunch of lights from friends around campus to help decorate for the party. It was so sweet to see how excited he became when he saw those lights.”

Nicole helped grant Maximus's wish.

While Nicole’s favorite part of her volunteer work is her fellow wish granters, she also believes her involvement has given her a greater sense of independence.

“I’m in college and I feel like I’m still figuring things out for myself. This opportunity with Make-A-Wish has given me a way to contribute to my community and it’s something I’m a part of that’s unique to me. That’s a great feeling,” Nicole said.

If Nicole could grant some advice to future wish granters, she encourages others to be creative.

“Make sure you ask the kids questions or plan fun activities to get them into a mindset that a wish is something unique and very special. Especially if you are a new volunteer, don’t be afraid to ask for help from the Make-A-Wish staff or your co-wish granter,” she said.

Nicole volunteered at the Walk For Wishes and interned with Make-A-Wish Arizona last summer.

Recently Nicole enjoyed meeting wish kid Alessandra, who shares her passion for space.

“My one true wish would be to see a rocket launch,” she shared. “Alessandra is still deciding on her wish, but it’s exciting that we connected and we already have that bond.”

Send a message of hope

With many of our wishes postponed, we want you to help keep our wish kids’ spirits high! Write, video or photograph yourself sharing a message of hope and post to any of our Make-A-Wish Arizona social media channels at @makeawishaz (tag @makeawisharizona on Instagram) and use the hashtag #WishesAreWaiting.

You can help bring hope to a child who needs it!

Send a Message of Hope

About this Blog

Make-A-Wish Arizona is the founding chapter of Make-A-Wish, the international wish granting organization. Our chapter grants incredible wishes every day for Arizona children with critical illnesses. We want to share the stories of our wishes -- and the inspiration, creativity, imagination and life-affirming enthusiasm that they bring -- with you.

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