INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — The Make-A-Wish organization grants special experiences for Hoosier children battling life-threatening medical conditions. Every month, CBS4 shares a story about a Hoosier family impacted by Make-A-Wish.
The Make-A-Wish organization's biggest fundraiser each year is the WZPL Request-A-Thon. The radio event is Dec. 1 and Dec. 2. CBS4 is proud to be involved with this year's WZPL Request-A-Thon.
"We started in this studio right here. 20 years ago," explains Dave Smiley of The Smiley Morning Show.
This December marks the 20th year for the WZPL Request-A-Thon. More than $6 million has been raised for the Make-A-Wish organization right here in Central Indiana. Smiley will take your cash and requests for 36 hours!
"I’ve heard stories they would run down to the music store and grab that album and play it on the radio to get those requests on the air," says Smiley.
All the money donated during the Request-A-Thon will go directly to Hoosier children fighting life-threatening conditions.
"When you donate the money and hear that kid on the air, your money is going directly to that child for their wish," explains Smiley.
Eighteen-year old Taylor Mattern hopes you will call in to donate.
"I wish for the whole New York experience. I want to go to shows and eat the New York food and see all the sights. I have cystic fibrosis. I was diagnosed at 6 months old. We are very fortunate. I’ve been treating it my whole life," says Mattern.
Taylor is one of nearly 300 Hoosier kids waiting right now for their wish to be granted. The average wish experience costs about $8,000.
"I listen to it every year. I cry every time at the stories. It is insane that I get to see it. The Request-A-Thon makes a huge impact in the community," says Mattern.
Donors can call in with one-time donations or monthly gifts. Smiley says the most money comes from $10 and $20 donations.
"It is amazing that people call in and commit and donate money during the holiday. It is Christmas time. They take the time to call in and make that donation. It is that Hoosier Hospitality going on here," says Smiley.
CBS4's Nicole Pence will broadcast LIVE on CBS4 This Morning during the WZPL Request-A-Thon on Dec. 1 and Dec. 2.
New this year, Make-A-Wish will collect donations at "pit stops" throughout Indianapolis, including Monument Circle, Perry Meridian High School and Hamilton Southeastern.
Click here to learn more about Make-A-Wish.
Watch CBS4 on the second Wednesday each month for Nicole Pence's special Wishful Wednesday stories.