INDIANAPOLIS- Hundreds of people got dolled up on April 27, all to put a smile on a child’s face and to celebrate the lives changed by the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“My wish was to go to Belize,” said Luke Gelfius. He may have not made it to the Indianapolis Big Wish Gala if it weren’t for Make-A-Wish. As a kid, he lost a large part of his colon to Crohn’s disease. Gelfius’s Make-A-Wish trip to visit the Mayan ruins changed everything.
“Up to this point I wasn’t able to walk anywhere and function like a normal person. It really got to usher in a new era of me being able to go out and do things,” said Gelfius. At this year’s gala, Make-A-Wish revealed a study currently in the works with early results showing wishes aren’t just momentous, they’re like medicine.
“A wish trip is almost like having a pause button for a child that’s suffering from an illness. What we know today is that wish trips change the outcomes for wish kids and their families,” said Dr. Paul Haut, a Riley Physician.
The study shows kids who get wishes are more likely to stay out of the hospital, which is more reason to get wishes to more kids.
“Let’s make more wishes happen!” said Gelfius.
The gala raised nearly $700,000. Make-A-Wish hoped to raise enough for 85 wishes, that total took them over the top, enough to fund 86 wishes.
The full study on wishes and the impact it has on kids is expected to be released later on in 2018.
For more information about Make-A-Wish, click here.