Teachers and students planned Wish Week fundraisers at each of their locations and collectively raised more than $16,000 to help grant wishes for Arizona kids with critical illnesses.
“We were looking to give back to an organization that supported local Arizona families, specifically children, and one where we could involve our teachers, students and their families,” said Nicole Bigham, owner of The Goddard School in Buckeye.
“I’m an alumni member of Chi Omega, whose national philanthropy partner is Make-A-Wish and seeing the difference a wish makes is what inspired me to recommend Make-A-Wish Arizona through our Goddard Cares initiative.” Bigham continued.
As a new fundraiser, each school had the opportunity to be creative in the way they wanted to give back.
“I learned that it doesn't have to be complicated to make a difference,” said Nicole. “We organized a live art auction and our students and teachers had a friendly competition of whose project would receive the highest donation. The amount we raised by far surpassed our goals and expectations, giving us the ability to grant a child’s wish and then some!”
Nicole says her favorite part about this experience was seeing the looks on everyone’s faces when they shared the results of their hard work.
“The wish we granted with the money we raised was for an accessible playset in a boy’s backyard,” she said. “When students and teachers found out they helped make that possible, it was a heartfelt moment!”
If Nicole could have her one true wish, she says she would want all kids to be able to have happy childhood memories.
“I’ve seen how a wish gives kids something to look forward to in what may be a time of stress everywhere else in their lives,” she said. “They have the chance to feel like a kid again and some wishes are so simple, it makes you stop and think about what's really important in your own life.”