Give Wishes Wings: Donate Air Miles to Make-A-Wish in April

For the past six years, I’ve led groups of college students on service trips to Give Kids The World Village, the whimsical, non-profit resort in Kissimmee, Florida where children with life-threatening illnesses stay with their families when they have a WISH to visit Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, SeaWorld, or anything related to Central Florida.  We instantly see the impact this cost-free vacation has on the wish families, and there’s a way you can help.  Continue reading for how you can donate airline miles to the Make-A-Wish Foundation and help bring a little happiness to kids and families just like the ones we saw enjoying Give Kids The World.

Lori's Magical Flight at Give Kids The World Village

Lori’s Magical Flight at Give Kids The World Village

Most Americans have seen or heard of a wish come true – whether it’s a 5-year-old boy rescuing a city as his favorite superhero, a young girl wishing to dance with a prince, or a teenager relishing beachside moments in the Caribbean, miles away from the thought of treatment and the pain of hospital visits.  However, few people recognize the resources Make-A-Wish requires to make wishes possible.

Give Wishes Wings - Make A Wish

“Travel for wishes is our number one cost,” said David Williams, president and chief executive officer for Make-A-Wish America.  “Donating airline miles provides an alternative way for supporters of Make-A-Wish to directly support our mission without ever opening their wallets.  It’s a non-monetary way to grant wishes and change the lives of sick kids fighting for their health.”

The process to donate miles is as simple as visiting givewisheswings.org, choosing from a number of airlines – including Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue, and United – and entering a few pieces of information.  The number of miles an individual can donate ranges from a few hundred miles to millions.  Donated miles never expire and are never used for anything other than wish travel for wish kids and their families.

Trillions of airline miles go unused each year.  Instead of letting them expire or using them for magazine subscriptions, those miles can easily be donated to change the lives of sick kids battling life-threatening illnesses.  The Give Wishes Wings campaign encourages those who have unused airline miles to consider donating them to help grant the nearly 75 percent of wishes that require travel – like those families my students and I worked with at Give Kids The World.

Mayor Clayton and Miss Merry at Give Kids The World

As a non-profit, Give Kids The World relies on the volunteer spirit of so many individuals, families and groups to make the resort operate 365 days a year.  Mark Hoewing, Public Relations Manager of Give Kids The World elaborated, “it warms my heart to see these wonderful young people giving back to others and helping these precious children, especially when they have competing choices like going to the beach or traveling.  In addition to the extremely important help it gives us to make this place run, it is great for the children and families to interact with the students, and I’m sure makes a lasting impression on the college kids as well. It is an experience neither side will ever forget, and these alterative spring break programs have become a vital part of Give Kids The World. We will always be appreciative of every student who helps.”

Please considering donating your airline miles to Make-A-Wish’s Give Wishes Wings campaign to help wish kids travel for their wishes.  For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About Dave Parfitt

Married, father of two girls, and living in the heart of the Finger Lakes. I'm a runner with a PhD in neuroscience and a passion for travel.