Children are busy writing letters to Santa, a Christmas tradition. Wish lists of a puppy, toys and even assertions of good behavior. They seem to go hand in hand with the Make-A-Wish foundation, which grants the wishes of children
suffering from life-threatening medical conditions. 30 years after it began, the foundation is one of the world’s leading charities that helps children to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Kelly Sarmiento is with the
Houston chapter of the Make-A-Wish foundation. She says Macy’s is helping them with their 3rd annual Believe campaign of collecting letters from children.
“Macy’s will donate one dollar to the Make-A-Wish foundation, up to one million dollars, for every stamped letter it receives in the big red Santa letter box, in the doors in the front entry way of the Macy’s stores.”
Last Friday, Macy’s pitched in an extra dollar to Make-A-Wish, which padded their one million dollar cap. Sarmiento says they feel like Santa when it comes to the kids.
“You get to grant that wish for them. The look on their face, the joy that it brings to their eyes is just — you’ll never forget it.”
Kessler McLaughlin will never forget his Santa’s wish that came true. Before he became a broadcast journalism major at Sam Houston State University, he suffered from leukemia when he wrote his letter to Santa.
“Let’s get some film equipment. You know, I’d like to make some commercials for cancer research and stuff like that. Here we were several weeks later and the wish was granted. I mean, it happened. I mean, it really happens for these kids, and that’s what’s most encouraging for me.”
He believes that his wish granted helped him to overcome his illness.
“We had started the paperwork while I was going through cancer and everything, and by the time it actually went through, I was post-treatment. But the thing that was very important for my wish was it really provided me with the means to say, You know what? A cancer diagnosis is not the end of you life, it’s a new beginning. The Make-A-Wish foundation really helped me to see that.”
Kelly Sarmiento with Make-A-Wish says that’s what it’s all about.
“What more can you ask for? That’s everything. To see that look on a child’s face, it makes it all worthwhile.”
Macy’s will collect letters to Santa for Make-A-Wish until December 24th.