WALNUT GROVE- Cynthia is an outgoing 11-year-old girl with a broad range of interests. She likes watching the show Nothing But Trouble, spending time with her best friend DaLisha, and playing Nintendo. And like many other kids, she loves to eat pizza, likes the subject of spelling in school, and enjoys time with her 3 dogs, Black, Pat and Shy. Although Cynthia may seem like just a happy go lucky little girl, she endures daily challenges that other children her age may not even understand. She suffers from sickle cell anemia, an incurable blood disease that can cause joint pain, blood clots and extreme weakness and loss of energy. “She has some moderate pain right now, but she’s doing OK,” said Dorothy, Cynthia’s mother.
So when Wish Coordinator Melissa North of Kids Wish Network heard about Cynthia and her wish to go to Disney World in Orlando to meet Mickey Mouse and his friends, Melissa quickly got her an invitation to hang out with Mickey’s cast of characters. Not only would Cynthia and her family get to enjoy Disney and other exciting Orlando amusement parks, they would soon be sharing special moments at Give Kids the World in Orlando, Florida, a magical resort full of laughter, joy and hugs, catering to the special needs of families who have children with life threatening illnesses.
While at Give Kids the World, Cynthia and her family ate at the resort’s whimsical restaurants, like the Ice Cream Parlor, and took part in all the fun-filled activities offered to all of its special guests. Cynthia’s favorite memory of the resort was playing in the arcade and conquering all the video games.
During their vacation, the family enjoyed a full Orlando experience, visiting Walt Disney World theme parks, Universal Studios and Sea World. And while at the amusement parks, Cynthia loved riding the roller coasters. “The rides at Universal Studios were her favorite,“ Dorothy said.
“It rained almost the entire trip, but we didn’t let it stop us, we came that far.” All attractions were compliments of Give Kids the World and Kids Wish Network.
“It was so wonderful, we are still tired from it all,” said Cynthia’s mom. “Bless all of the people that made it possible.” No matter what the future may hold for this young lady, she and her family will always be able to look back to a magical place in their memories where dreams really do come true.
Kids Wish Network is a nationally recognized non-profit organization whose mission is to grant wishes to children who have life-threatening illnesses. If you know of a child between the ages of 3 and 18 who may be in need of Kids Wish Network’s wish granting services, please call (813) 891-9374 or toll free at (888) 918-9004. You can also visit Kids Wish Network’s web site at www.kidswishnetwork.org.