Grant A Wish
One of our most satisfying, fulfilling programs created by the generosity that is our Dayton community is now titled our Grant A Wish Program. Every month, children in our area write us a very heartfelt letter of request. We have been approached for a wide and wild range of donation, anywhere from a long distance school trip to a collection of incubators for an area school. Letters of intent are coupled with letters of recommendation for each child, one coming from an adult in their community, one from someone in the educational sphere. Many times, we have several requests and have to choose one honoree based on who might benefit most. Every month, a child’s request is fulfilled.
It is an amazingly gratifying position to be in; kind of like being Tinker Bell, waving her magic wand, and we thank you, dear Dayton, for giving us that ability. I’ll tell you one story that will give you a clearer picture of just what you are allowing us to do.
We received a letter, about a year ago that really stands out in my memory. A caseworker from Children’s Services had written us about a young lady who lived in an area foster home; her foster mother was and had been very ill for some time. The young lady, who was ten at the time, was very attached to her foster mother and took great strides to attend to her needs. She got her (blood relation) six year old sister ready every morning, got them on the bus, worked hard in school (with a B average in grades), got home, made dinner most nights, helped her sister with her studies and made sure her mom was well cared for. This young lady had come from a very abusive household and held dear the fact (again, so SO many of us take this for granted) that she was loved and genuinely regarded in a family she did not expect to find. This young lady hoped to go to a summer camp and ride a horse for the first time in her life. Oh she went to camp- she most definitely went to camp. I like to think of that young lady riding loose and free that summer camp week, with a heart full of peace, a gladness of the day, a memory of joy that no one can ever erase.
So, it is with gratitude and humility that we can take the monetary donations offered us by a heart filled community, and directly turn them into impossible dreams come true for youth who are endlessly surprised by an unexpected gift. For so many of our children, this is a rarity that offers them insight- that there is kindness in a darker world; child by child, you’re making their days just a bit brighter. I’m hoping that together, one day, we can get that light bright enough to where we clear out the sunglass section of every major department store and outlet. Until we get there, every step we take forward is making a huge difference that is the rocky path for the children we serve. Thank you for all that you do, dear Dayton.
At this point, February, 2015, we have served over thirty children a monthly wish, in the form of camps, classes, computers and the like. It has been awe-inspiring to witness the euphoria and the appreciation.