Leukemia patient Weston Crusselle is soon heading for a Hawaiin getaway thanks to the Make-A-Wish foundation.
COBB COUNTY, Ga. —
A charity dedicated to making the dreams of sick children happen is facing a major backlog amid the financial downturn.
Georgia’s chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation calls it a perfect storm: donations dropped, demand spiked and so did costs, leaving hundreds of sick children waiting for their wishes. Channel 2’s John Bachman spent Tuesday with a Cobb County teen battling leukemia who spent a year and a half on the charity’s wait-list. But in two weeks, 17-year-old Weston Crusselle is getting his wish.
“[Leukemia] changed my life because I can't play sports anymore, but it hasn't changed me as a person, really. You get to see things from a different perspective," Crusselle told Bachman.
Thanks to Make-A-Wish, he and his family will soon be going on a Hawaiian getaway.
“When you have a kid with cancer, financially, you don't have that. You can't do it, so this is a blessing for us," Crusselle’s mother, Jennifer, said.
Her son is one of 600 children in Georgia who have to wait for their wish, and many of them don’t have the time to wait.
"Since January 2012, we've lost nine kids on our backlog list. They just don't have time. That's why wishes can't wait," Make-A-Wish CEO John Brennan told Bachman.
Part of the problem is 60 percent of the wishes involve flights, but with lost donations and more expensive airfare, the company is having trouble keeping up. Make-A-Wish is launching a $2.5 million campaign to cut that wait time for Georgia kids. To donate to the cause, visit www.ga-al.wish.org.