• 2 295 Wishes Granted
  • Fact Sheets

Quick Facts

We grant wishes for children between 3-17 years of age who have a life-threatening medical condition.  Our goal is to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.


Who We Are

  • Make-A-Wish® was founded in Phoenix Arizona in 1980.
  • We belong to the largest wish-granting organization in the world with 37 affiliates on 5 continents in over 46 countries and have granted over 350,000 wishes collectively since 1980.
  • Today we are granting an average of 20 - 25 wishes per month across Canada
  • Volunteers are the largest component of MAWBC & YK with over 150 active volunteers
  • For every dollar donated to Make-A-Wish, more than 84% goes toward wish granting

How it all Began

  • The inspiration for Make-A-Wish was a wish granted in 1980 to seven-year-old Christopher Greicius by members of the Arizona Highway Patrol. Christopher who had leukemia, wished to become a police officer.
  • In the fall of 1983, Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon granted the first wish in Canada to Debbie, aged 13, suffering from leukemia. Debbie chose to go to Germany with her father and brother to see her grandparents.


Make-A-Wish Canada History

  • 1983: Make-A-Wish is established with a chapter in British Columbia.
  • 1986: Southwestern Ontario Chapter established in London, Ont.
  • 1992: Make-A-Wish Canada, the national governing body and Make-A-Wish® International established.
  • 1993-2000: Establishment of five new chapters in Canada - Toronto and Central Ontario, Eastern Ontario, Northern Ontario, Northern Alberta and Southern Alberta.
  • 2001: Establishment of new chapters in Quebec and Atlantic Provinces (serving Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland).


Unique Features of Make-A-Wish

  • We ensure the wish is very personal, involves the family and is free from financial worries.
  • Make-A-Wish encourages the entire family to be a part of the wish experience, knowing that parents and siblings need magical moments just as much as the wish child.
  • We do not receive government funding but rely on donations from individuals, corporations, grants and bequests to support our wish granting activities.
  • We do not participate in chain letters, door-to-door solicitations, or telemarketing.
  • We do not solicit wishes. Wishes are referred to us through the medical community or the child's relatives.
  • We do not embark on "group" wishes. All wishes are individual and based on the child's chosen wish.


Additional Resources

Annual Reports

Read our annual reports to learn more about our wish granting efforts, our corporate partnerships and our mission, and for up-to-date financial information about how we use your donations to grant magical wish

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Wish Impact Study

Learn more about the impact wishes have for wish kids, families, and everyone else involved in a wish experience.

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Fact Sheets

The mission of Make-A-Wish® BC & Yukon is to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.

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Fact Sheets


Make-A-Wish® PSAs (Public Service Announcements) contain a powerful message – that helps viewers understand how we strive to create hope, strength and joy in the lives of children living with life-threatening medical conditions.

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