Make A Wish
I write an advertising piece each Friday
for an e-mail newsletter I like to send out. This one from
June seemed to strike a chord with people, thankfully. I
got more response to it than any other I've sent out.
I had an experience this week I thought
was worth conveying.
I was fortunate enough to be invited
to help create some work on behalf of Make-A-Wish, the organization
that literally makes miracles happen for children who are
ill. (The invite to be involved came from Workshop, the
talented design/marketing outfit in Irvine, who’s
done work for them before.)
We had a photo shoot to do this past
week with a bunch of the kids (and a corresponding video
document to produce.) Well, as you can imagine, it was destined
to be an emotional day. After all, these are children who
have been dealt some of the harshest blows imaginable. (As
one mom said of her seven year old, leukemia stricken angel,
"She hasn’t even had any time yet to make any
mistakes in life. Yet she has to deal with this…")
But for all of the grave situations
and brutally unfair diagnoses in the room, it was a palpable
joy that ruled the day. These kids were all smiling, all
funny, engaging and positive. And I think a prime reason
for this are the efforts of Make-A-Wish.
Sure, many of these kids are still
in the throes of battle against their diseases. But they
are also fresh off the heels of their wishes being granted.
Swimming with dolphins, meeting with Brittany Spears—we
heard about lots of them that day. To hear both parent and
child relive their wish being granted demonstrated the power
of this organization. Because in that moment, they were
perhaps able to forget the disease. And the hospital. And
all the other pain that goes along with being sick.
All of the kids we spent time with
seem to be winning their fights. And I believe some of the
credit should go to Make-A-Wish. Because their efforts don’t
stop after a wish has been granted. They maintain an ongoing
program of parties, time, attention and compassion. They
give tired, understandably frustrated parents some respite
and a shoulder when they need. They are like medicine for
the soul; an endless supply of good feeling and caring.
Make-A-Wish is a brand defined by their
behavior. Their "product" is both a selfless dedication
to making kids’ dreams come true and helping parents
cope—and the resulting hope that people feel.
Great clients (I know firsthand) can
teach you about marketing and advertising. This is a client
who has taught me about life. About patience, unselfishness
and the importance of helping a child who maybe can’t
play catch with dad, take ballet lessons with her little
girlfriends, or go chasing a dog in a field. Not yet. But
through the efforts of these remarkable people, all of a
sudden those things seem more within reach.
If you think you can be of service
to this incredible force, I encourage you to contact them.
Once you hear some of the stories, I bet you’ll want
to do everything in your power to help restore some of the
dreams, innocence and wonder to these kids. After all, that’s
what happens when a wish comes true.
The Surf City Advertising Company