May 1, 2017, OTTAWA – Just in time for World Wish Day® on April 29 and Canada’s 150th celebration, Thursday, April 27 marked the launch of 150wishes.ca, an engaging campaign which aims to raise $1.5 million so 150 wishes can be granted. The campaign is inspired by the kind heart and selfless spirit of former wish child, Dominique. Knowing the hope and joy that comes from having a wish granted, Dominique has teamed up with Make-A-Wish® Eastern Ontario to launch 150wishes.ca for 150 children in Eastern Ontario living with critical illnesses.
Despite her struggles with Friedreich’s ataxia – a rare, inherited disease which causes progressive damage to the nervous system – Dominique is an average 21-year-old. She’s a third-year social communications student at Saint Paul University and volunteers regularly for Make-A-Wish®. Her dedication to helping others led to her spearheading the 150 Wishes campaign. She reached out to 149 other wish children to be a part of the 150wishes.ca video, which she produced and directed.
“If we can inspire 10,000 Canadians to donate $150 or $10 per month for 15 months, we will reach our goal,” says Dominique. “How fantastic will it be when 150 more wish children receive their special wish? Having my wish come true restored my belief in the fact that life is amazing despite its challenges. I want to wish it forward, so that 150 more children can experience that kind of happiness. I want them to know that regardless of what life brings us, it’s worth it to keep fighting and stay positive.”
Last week, Dominique was part of a surprise wish reveal that took place to the amazement of an unknowing young boy with anaplastic large cell lymphoma stage 4. After undergoing important procedures only a few days ago, Mateo received a visit from Make-A-Wish and Dominique at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario. To his surprise, Mateo received a special video message from his friend, Chris Kelly of the Ottawa Senators. As the Senators mascot, Spartacat, presented Mateo with a signed jersey, Chris told the speechless boy that his wish to have a “man cave room makeover” will be granted.
“It was important for me to incorporate a wish reveal into the launch of my special project,” Dominique says. “I really wanted people to see and feel the impact that a wish can have on a child. Sometimes words can’t describe how magical and powerful a wish truly is and how it can boost our spirits and give us something to look forward to.”
“There’s no better way to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday than to grant the wishes of 150 amazing young children,” says Tanya Desjardins, CEO, Make-A-Wish Eastern Ontario. “150 Wishes is an exciting initiative that we’ve never done before. The money we raise together will provide children who bravely battle life-threatening illnesses with hope, strength and joy.”
To make a donation, please visit 150wishes.ca.