This year, the Make-A-Wish Foundation is partnering with Wells Enterprises to launch a new campaign — 100 Years, 100 Wishes. Best known for its Blue Bunny brand ice cream, Wells is celebrating its 100-year anniversary by funding 100 wishes for children with life-threatening illnesses. We caught up with Make-A-Wish CEO David Williams and Wells CEO Mike Wells to learn more about the program, and how you can get involved.
POPSUGAR Moms: Tell us about the 100 Years, 100 Wishes campaign.
Mike Wells: It's Blue Bunny's 100th anniversary, and when we sat down to figure out what to do, we thought about two things — how to honor the consumer, and to do good in some way — to give back. We started talking about birthdays, and what you do to celebrate birthdays. You blow out candles, you make a wish. The concept just clicked. We're funding 100 wishes, but our employees are also getting involved.
David Williams: They could have chosen to celebrate their 100th in a myriad of ways. The fact that they chose to partner with us is very significant. When a corporation of this size does something with us, it's a great day.
PSM: How many wishes does the foundation grant during an average year?
DW: Every year we grant just about 14,000 wishes. There are about 27,000 kids diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition every year. So for each child that we're able to help, there's one we're not. The good news is that since 1980, we've been increasing the number of wishes that we grant every year. Our vision is to provide one for every eligible child.
PSM: David, What's the most gratifying part of being at the helm of Make-A-Wish; and Mike, what's the most gratifying part of being able to partner with the organization?
DW: I'm very fortunate in that I get the opportunity to meet a lot of families, the moms and dads whose kids are sick. As a father, it would be so hard for me to express my gratitude to the people fulfilling my child's wish. They would not have known my son or daughter, yet to be able to do something to fulfill their one true wish — that would be very meaningful. Talking to the moms and dads is a very humbling reminder of the power of the organization.
MW: For me it's very similar, but I've also come to appreciate that in running a successful business — it's because of that that we're able to partner with Make-A-Wish and be part of this. Knowing that these families are experiencing this wish, and experiencing what David was just talking about as a result of us managing our business well and it makes us even more encouraged to do that for the next 100 years.
Click to read more to learn how you can support Make-A-Wish's 100 Years, 100 Wishes campaign