Below, you’ll find some of our most frequently asked questions. If you don’t find your answer here, please contact us. We’d be more than happy to get back to you with an answer as soon as possible.
- Are Kids Wish Network's financials audited?
- In an effort to provide our donors with timely and accurate information, Kids Wish Network voluntarily undergoes an annual audit of our financial records by an independent accounting firm. Additionally, to ensure the accuracy of expenses for each individual wish we fulfill, auditors perform the same rigorous auditing standards. Upon request, Kids Wish Network will gladly provide private citizens and organizations the same information reported to the charity regulating agencies.
- Can I donate anonymously?
- Yes, we recognize that many of our donors, whether individuals, corporations or celebrities, may choose to help our wish kids without public recognition. All requests for privacy are strictly adhered to.
- Can I make a donation to Kids Wish Network on behalf of someone else?
- Yes, if you would like to make an honorarium or memorial gift, you may do so on our web site by clicking on the yellow "Donate Today" button at the top of the site. An email and/or letter notification will be sent to the recipient of the gift, along with your personal message. For more information, please call 888-918-9004. If you prefer to mail your contribution, print this form and mail it along with your check or money order to:
Kids Wish Network
Attention: Development Department
4060 Louis Avenue
Holiday, FL 34691
- Can we sponsor a wish child in our area?
- Yes, simply go to the Meet our Wish Kids section of our website and click on a child in your area. If you do not see a child listed in your area, e-mail or call the Development Department on our toll free number at 888-918-9004, and we will be happy to assist you in selecting a child in need of your help. Please note that for privacy reasons all of our wish kids are not posted on our website. Additionally, the status of current wishes changes daily.
- Does Kids Wish Network use professional fundraising companies?
- Kids Wish Network operates nationally from one location. Having one office ensures consistency and quality of the services we provide to thousands of deserving children and pediatric facilities nationwide. Because of an incredible demand for our pediatric programs, the majority of our staff focuses on implementing these programs. As such, we’ve enlisted the help of several professional fundraising organizations to help ensure the continuance of our services and programs. Our professional fundraisers are selected based on strict criteria to ensure quality services and compliance with laws in all areas.
Most importantly, we require the fundraisers to ask each contact if they know of a sick child in their area who would benefit from our services. Our fundraisers assist us in discovering 30% of our wish kids.
- If I want to make a larger donation, how much will benefit the kids?
- Kids Wish Network created the Guardian Angel Fund, which was initiated with a grant from the Wal-Mart Foundation, to specifically and uniquely address concerns of donation distribution. Any donation may be directed to this fund, of which 100% of the donation will be used directly for program services. Our donors who name Kids Wish Network as beneficiary in their will or estate plan direct their gift to the Guardian Angel Fund.
- Is Kids Wish Network governed by an over-sight reporting agency?
- As a 501(c) (3) charitable organization, the Internal Revenue Service requires Kids Wish Network to file an annual 990 informational return which is open for public inspection and can be viewed at www.guidestar.org. In addition, Kids Wish Network is registered with and complies with the laws governing charitable organizations in all 50 states. Each state has individual requirements and oversight agencies. Our non-profit foundation was organized in the State of Florida and the agency responsible for oversight of our charitable solicitation and registration is Florida's Division of Consumer Services. They can be reached toll free at 1-800-435-7352.
- Is Kids Wish Network registered with the Better Business Bureau?
- From inception, Kids Wish Network has proudly kept administrative costs below 5%. In order to keep these costs to a minimum we do not subscribe to reporting services from organizations not sanctioned by a government oversight agency, i.e. the BBB or other consumer unions who often require listing fees. Additionally, when evaluating charitable organizations, a number of these bureaus do not subscribe to commonly accepted accounting principles when evaluating charitable organizations. State agencies were expressly set up to provide consumer protection, at no cost to the foundation or our supporters, and we feel they provide the most direct, accurate and unbiased information available. If you are unsure about how to contact your state agency, please contact us.
- What is the average cost of a wish?
- The cost of a wish varies dramatically from child to child depending on the type of wish they choose. If you were to take the direct costs spent on wishes and divide it by the number of wishes an organization performs, you could calculate an average of the direct costs per wish. This figure, however, does not include the time any paid staff members devoted to the wish or the overhead necessary to conduct support operations. Kids Wish Network is unique in that all wish files are audited and reviewed independently, therefore you can rely on the accuracy in the numbers of wishes granted and the cost of those wishes.
We are able to keep our wish costs substantially low by actively seeking participation of the business community not only through cash donations, but also by donating goods and services to help fulfill individual wishes whenever possible. We believe seeking their active involvement is worth the extra time and effort, both from a community spirit standpoint as well as being able to better manage funds to help more kids, when it becomes necessary to buy direct to fulfill a child's wish.
- Is there a time frame for families to be eligible for this unique program?
- This assistance is available to the family for up to 30 days after the child has passed.
- Who qualifies for this assistance?
- Kids Wish Network assists the families of our wish kids who have passed away prior to 21 years of age, to help ensure a proper end of life ceremony.
- What kinds of wishes are most frequently requested?
- To meet a celebrity, theme park visits, shopping sprees, and traveling are all popular choices. We have also fulfilled many requests for commodity wishes such as playground sets, computers and high definition televisions.
- Do you only grant wishes to children who are terminally ill?
- Ours is a mission of hope for a full recovery, and we have witnessed first-hand miracles in that regard. A doctor must only sign a form indicating that the child's condition is life-threatening to qualify medically for a wish.
- Is a family's economic status a factor for their child to be eligible for a wish?
- There are absolutely no income qualification requirements that a wish family must meet in order for their child to be eligible for a wish.
- Is there any charge to the family of a wish child?
- Kids Wish Network never charges a wish family for fulfilling a child's wish. All expenses for the wish are appropriately funded. We believe the families should not be burdened by the financial cost of their child's wish.
- My child's wish is a travel wish. What dates can we travel?
- We make every attempt to work with your desired schedule. However, we do not schedule travel wishes during any holidays or spring break.
- What are the criteria for granting a wish?
- We grant wishes to children between the ages of 3 and 18 who have a life-threatening illness and who have not had a previous wish with another organization. The child also must be able to communicate his or her wish, either verbally or nonverbally. A certified medical doctor must sign a form signifying that his or her patient's condition is life- threatening - no other medical prognosis is required. Unlike most organizations, which require a child's physician to sign a statement of probability that the child will not survive past the age of eighteen, Kids Wish Network requires only that the physician verify the child's condition as life-threatening. We believe in celebrating life and encourage our wish families and kids to remain hopeful.
- What kinds of wishes are not considered?
- We are unable to grant wishes such as motorized vehicles, hunting trips, in-ground pools or in-ground hot tubs or international travel due to liability. We also do not grant wishes for pets, medical equipment or home improvements. We do not give cash.
- Where do wish child referrals come from?
- There are many referral sources for wish kids, including professional fundraisers, hospitals, medical organizations and parents, relatives and friends who are aware of a child who may be eligible for a wish. They hear about us from press releases, public service announcements, volunteers, our website, fundraisers and numerous other sources.
- Who is permitted to go on the child's wish with him?
- Immediate family members living in the same house with the child are eligible to participate in the wish. If a sibling is over the age of 18, we will need proof of residency for that sibling. We will also permit a nurse to attend if the child is in need of professional medical assistance.
- Will you grant a wish to a child with a life-threatening illness who is unable to communicate?
- We will grant wishes to children with life-threatening illnesses who are able to communicate their wish either verbally or non-verbally. We are committed to ensuring that the wish desired, truly comes from the child. If a child is non-verbal, we will need to have the wish verified through a professional non-family member who works with the child. (i.e. - doctor, social worker, teacher, etc.)
Hero of the Month
- How does a child qualify?
- The child must have been treated at the nominating facility and not have a life-threatening illness. They must not have received a wish from any other organization.
- How does a facility become a Hero of the Month member facility?
- Contact Kids Wish Network at 888-918-9004 and ask to speak to a facility coordinator.
- How often may a hospital nominate a child?
- Member facilities may nominate two children per month for the length of their agreement.
- Is there a cost to the facility?
- There is no cost to the facility. However, we may seek sponsorship to cover the costs of the program.
- Is there a waiting list?
- Yes, this is an extremely popular program. In general, you can expect to receive a commencement date for the program within 3 to 6 months of signing the agreement.
- What does the nominee receive?
- The child receives a beautiful personalized certificate, a Hero t-shirt, a gold medallion, and a gift card valued at $100.
- What is the age range for nominees?
- 3 to 18 years of age.
- Who may nominate a child?
- A child advocate – such as a nurse, physician, social worker or child life specialist – employed by a facility which participates in the Hero of the Month program.
Holiday of Hope Gift Bank
- Do you have any information about recalled toys?
- Kids Wish Network can assure our wish families and Holiday of Hope Gift Bank member hospitals that anytime a recall occurs, and we have the recalled product in our inventory, it is immediately pulled.
- Does your Gift Bank include toys manufactured in China?
- Approximately 80% of all toys coming into the U.S. are manufactured in China. Therefore, a similar percentage of our inventory is produced there.
- How does a facility become a member of the Holiday of Hope Gift Bank program?
- Contact Kids Wish Network at 888-918-9004 and ask to speak to a hospital coordinator.
- How many toys can a Gift Bank facility expect to receive?
- This depends upon the size of the facility, your pediatric census and the amount of available storage space. In general, the amount of toys received in the Gift Bank last from 6-12 months.
- Is there a cost to the hospital?
- There is no cost to the facility to receive a Gift Bank. However, we may seek sponsorship to underwrite the costs of shipping and handling of this program.
- May we share the toys with other facilities?
- The toys belong to Kids Wish Network until they are placed into the hands of the child. That is why the program is called a "Gift Bank". Therefore the toys must remain to be distributed only within the contracted facility.
- What age groups do you include in the Gift Banks?
- Our Gift Banks include toys targeted to children between 3 and 12. Upon request and if available, we will send toys for infants and teenagers up to the age of 18.
- Where do you get your toys for the Gift Banks?
- Our toys are all brand new, top of the line products donated to Kids Wish Network by some of America's leading toy manufacturers and distributors.