(Contest Nominee) MAKE-A-WISH COLORADO Empowers Kids Facing Life-Threatening Medical Conditions

Citywide Banks Community OutreachMAKE-A-WISH® COLORADO is one of seven local charities nominated in Citywide Banks’ Charity Hand-Up Contest taking place from March 1-14, 2013. The Denver/Boulder community is invited to vote for a nominee and enter prize drawings. Citywide Banks will donate $7,500 to nominated charities based on voting results.

Make-A-Wish Colorado - Citywide Banks Charity Hand-Up ContestWe all want to make our children’s wishes come true. That sentiment is especially true, and sometimes urgent, for parents of children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Imagine the look on a child’s face after being told he gets to pack his bags for a trip to Walt Disney World; or after a much-desired puppy licks her face; or while shaking the hand of his football idol.

That’s the mission of Make-A-Wish Colorado: to grant the wishes of Colorado children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.

Since 1983, Make-A-Wish Colorado — one of the first local chapters of the Make-A-Wish Foundation — has been making wishes come true for thousands of children ages 2 ½ to 18 years old who have life-threatening medical conditions.

“While many of the children the organization serves go on to lead healthy lives, the experience of having their wish granted is often the turning point in their recovery,”  explained development officer, Lauren Beede. “We’ve done studies that show that having the wish granted can make the child stronger and more energetic. It makes them empowered and helps them fight their illnesses.”

When Josh, a 13-year-old boy suffering from Rasmussen’s disease got to not only attend a Broncos football game, but also watch them practice and meet star quarterback Peyton Manning, his life was changed by this once-in-a-lifetime dream come true. “The wish touched Josh’s heart and made him feel whole again,” Josh’s mom reported.

And when 17-year-old Peter, who had always dreamed of becoming a priest, got to meet Pope Benedict XVI in Rome, it only deepened his desire to become a priest and provided him with the motivation and inspiration he needed to battle large B cell lymphoma, a type of blood cancer.

Make-A-Wish Colorado has granted more than 3,900 wishes since its inception 30 years ago, with the help of dedicated volunteers, generous donations from individuals and corporations, as well as with the support from numerous local sponsors and partners. “We serve the entire state of Colorado and have granted the wish of every eligible child referred to us.,” explained Beede.

While a trip to Walt Disney World in Florida is the most popular wish, the nonprofit has also granted unique wishes like turning a little boy into a cowboy and arranging for a teenager to be an extra on her favorite TV show. Some of the wishes they’re working on this year include: a trip to visit the Grand Canyon, a shopping spree in New York and a visit to LegolandPark in San Diego.

How can you help? Make-A-Wish Colorado is always looking for volunteers, financial donations, in-kind donations like cars and airline miles, and attendees to their fundraising events. This year the organization will celebrate its 30th year with the Sporting Affair Celebrity Waiter Dinner on February 28th. Thirty sports celebrities, including Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin, pro-cycler Tom Danielson and former Denver Bronco Billy Thompson will interact and wait on guests at this unique fundraising event.

The average cost of a wish is $7,500, so a $5,000 donation from Citywide Banks would go toward covering the cost of making a child’s wish come true.

For more information about Make-A-Wish Colorado and ways to donate your time or money, please visit www.colorado.wish.org.

Vote to Give Make-A-Wish Colorado a $5,000 Hand-Up
As a Colorado owned bank focused entirely on the Front Range, Citywide Banks shares a commitment to our local community with Make-A-Wish Colorado. Through our Charity Hand-Up Charity Hand-Up Contest Contest, we are proud to spotlight the great work and ongoing needs of Denver/Boulder nonprofits. Based on the results of a 14-day vote on Facebook, the local community will determine how $7,500 is split among seven Colorado charities nominated by Citywide Banks employees. The charity receiving the most votes will receive $5,000 and the runner-up will receive $1,000. The remaining donation amounts will correspond to the voting results for each nominated charity. The voting public can also enter to win 1 of 10 prizes, including dinner for two at some of Denver’s top restaurants. Official prize drawing rules are available by clicking here. For more information about the contest please visit www.CitywideBanks.com/charity/.

How to Cast Your Vote – March 1 -14, 2013
The voting will take place at Facebook.com/citywidebanks. Users will need to make sure they are logged into their personal Facebook account. If a user doesn’t have an account, it only takes minutes to set up a new Facebook account and it’s free. The online voting form will only be accessible for Citywide Banks Facebook Fans. To become a Fan, simply click on the “Like” button on top of any of the pages on Citywide’s Facebook Fan Page at Facebook.com/citywidebanks. Then, click on the link for the ”Charity Contest” tab to access the online voting page. Each Facebook account will be permitted one vote during the 14-day voting period.

Spread the Word about Voting for Make-A-Wish Colorado
Tell your coworkers, friends, and family in Colorado to cast their vote for your favorite nonprofit. Use the sharing buttons above this article, on the Facebook voting page, or throughout Citywide Banks’ social media pages to help spread the word.

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