WHEN THE BATS FALL SILENT:
Make-A-Wish B.C. & Yukon Missing Out on Six-Figure Summer Softball Fundraiser
JULY 2020 BURNABY, B.C. – The Slo-Pitch For Kids (SPFK) annual softball tournament in support of Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon is not taking place in 2020 due to the ongoing global pandemic, marking the first time in 14 years that the tournament has not gone ahead.
“We have a lot of dedicated fundraisers and players who are disappointed not to be coming out this year,” said tournament organizer, player, and Make-A-Wish volunteer Liz Monger. “For us, this is more than just a ball tournament. We know it’s a critical source of revenue for Make-A-Wish, and most importantly, a vehicle for granting wishes for kids who are experiencing the toughest times in their lives. We’re so disappointed that we can’t gather this year.”
“In the last few years of this event, the SPFK crew have topped $200,000 in fundraising with each tournament,” explained Ross Hetherington, Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon Regional Vice President. “We’re definitely going to miss this incredible event this year.”
In the history of the tournament, more than $1.2M has been raised for the granting of wishes to kids battling critical illnesses.
Hetherington explained that types of wishes involving travel, or meeting favourite celebrities, are on hold around the world right now due to COVID-19 restrictions, though many other types of wishes are still being granted.
“We have wishes being granted right now, which is a really positive thing to be able to do for the world,” said Hetherington. “While wishes that involve travel and gatherings have been paused until September 30, 2020, Make-A-Wish remains focused on our commitment to deliver hope and joy to children with critical illnesses. Thanks to the dedication from our community of supporters, we continue to grant memorable wishes while keeping our wish families safe.”
All the while, Make-A-Wish has reimagined some of its summer fundraising offerings to hopefully gain some ground on event revenues and engage supporters in opportunities that have been customized for the times we are in. The foundation is hosting a summer-long 50/50 raffle with tickets open for purchase to B.C. residents. As well, the Trailblaze Challenge has just launched, an event which invites people to track their walking, hiking and running miles, and collect pledges in the name of Make-A-Wish. That event, too, will run all summer long.
“We will miss the SPFK tournament this year—it’s an incredibly fun community-driven event that’s all for the kids,” said Hetherington, “We know SPFK will be back again in another year, and in the meantime, we’re encouraging people to look at other ways to participate and donate in ways that are safest for now.”
To make a direct donation to Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon, visit makeawishbc.ca/donate
ABOUT MAKE-A-WISH® CANADA
Make-A-Wish® creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We are on a quest to bring every eligible child's wish to life, because a wish is an integral part of a child's treatment journey. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight a critical illness. Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Make-A-Wish is the world’s leading children’s wish-granting organization, serving children in every community in Canada, and in more than 50 countries worldwide.
On October 1, 2019, Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada and Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Canada joined forces, with the goal of granting the wish of every eligible child across the country. United as Make-A-Wish Canada, our mission is to provide children with life-threatening illnesses the opportunity to realize their most heartfelt wish, giving them the strength to endure their treatments and build resilience.
Together, generous donors, supporters, staff and volunteers across the country help grant more than four wishes per day, on average. Since 1983, Make-A-Wish Canada has granted over 34,000 wishes across the country, over 1,600 last year alone. For more information about Make-A-Wish Canada, visit makeawish.ca.