Honolulu, HI- January 27, 2020 – Make-A-Wish® Hawaii is helping make history by sending Wahiawa wish kid Christopher to be part of a record 19 wishes being granted at Super Bowl LIV. Christopher, a 16-year-old with kidney disease, will join 18 other wish kids and their families flying from 12 different states and Canada to the Sunshine State for the big game. Christopher and his family will experience a life-changing, football-fueled weekend thanks to the generous donations of individuals and corporate supporters, including the National Football League (NFL).
The festivities begin on Thursday, Jan. 30 when the wish families will be treated to a welcome reception at Dave & Buster’s – a national sponsor of Make-A-Wish. In the days following, Christopher will receive a private, behind-the-scenes tour of Hard Rock Stadium, spend time with past and present NFL players, test their football skills at the Super Bowl Experience and get red carpet access to the NFL Honors event. To cap off the wish, Christopher will witness first-hand as the NFC Champion and AFC Champion battle for the coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy on Sunday, Feb. 2.
“Wishes allow children with critical illnesses to turn their attention from the challenges of today to the possibilities of tomorrow,” said Trini Kaopuiki Clark, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish Hawaii. “We hope that by having his wish come true, Christopher will return from Florida with the physical and emotional strength needed to face whatever challenges come his way.”
The tradition of wish kids at the Super Bowl goes back to only a couple years after the founding of Make-A-Wish in 1980. The first wish that the NFL granted was for John Paul Serna, a 12-year-old Arizona boy who attended Super Bowl XVI in 1982. The wish was the 9th ever in Make-A-Wish history, and since then, every Super Bowl for the past 38 years has been attended by at least one wish kid. In total, more than 250 wishes have been granted at the Super Bowl over the past four decades.
To learn more about Make-A-Wish Hawaii and find out how you can get involved, visit hawaii.wish.org.
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About Make-A-Wish Hawaii
Make-A-Wish® Hawaii creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We seek to bring every eligible child’s wish to life, because a wish is an integral part of a child’s treatment journey. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight their illness. Headquartered in Honolulu, Make-A-Wish Hawaii is considered one of the top charities in the state, with 78 cents of every dollar raised going directly toward granting wishes in Hawaii. One of the first local Make-A-Wish chapters established, Make-A-Wish Hawaii continues to be among the busiest in the nation. Together, generous donors, supporters, staff and more than 700 volunteers have granted nearly 1,500 wishes for children across the state of Hawaii since 1982 and have hosted more than 16,000 others for children around the world; the chapter granted 99 local wishes in 2019 alone. For more information about Make-A-Wish Hawaii, visit Hawaii.wish.org.