Friday, March 18, 2016

Cottonwood High's Make-A-Wish Assembly

 Back in the beginning of November I got a call from the director of Make-A-Wish. He told me that high schools throughout Utah enjoy doing fundraisers for them and of course, the organization is very appreciative. He explained that it really helps the high school kids to put a face to the organization as well, and they like to choose a Wish Kid who is in the process of getting his wish to be that "face" and represent them. They love to have the Wish Kid come to their kick-off fundraiser assembly and have the family/parents tell about their kid and what they have been through, as well as tell about their experience with Make-A-Wish and how it has helped them through treatment, etc. The kids they select have to be very outgoing and fun so that they really make an impression on the students. They said that Magnus had been recommended because he was such a funny little guy. We were honored and said that yes, of course we would be happy to help. 

The assembly was at 8:00 o'clock in the morning after I had worked a night shift the night before. I was tired, but my happiness far outweighed my exhaustion. We had explained to Magnus what was going on and he was thrilled to go see the "big kids" at the school and tell him about his wish. Andy had created a little slide-show film wiht pictures from Magnus hospital stay, recovery, therapy, and Make-A-Wish experience thus far. It was so touching and i still cry every time I watch it. 

When we arrived the SBO's just surrounded Magnus and he was so excited with all of the attention. They were SO sweet to him and they gave him his own "colt" (their mascot) and told him he was a jr. colt now. They had him ride with them onto the stage to open the assembly. The director of Make-A-Wish explained the process and a little about what they do and then they introduced Andy and me to tell Magnus' story. I told them all about Magnus and how we found the cancer and all of the trials he had been through. I also thanked them for being so amazing and being willing to raise money for such an amazing cause. And then Andy spoke for a minute and showed them his video he had made. Afterwards they started the fundraising right then. They had performances, a live auction (with a real auctioneer!), and sent around change buckets several times throughout the assembly.

Magnus was involved in the whole assembly and they all just treated him so special. It was one of the sweetest things I have ever seen and my mama heart almost burst. They sent him around with change buckets, had him up on stage for several things, and had him talk in the microphone to all of the students. He absolutely loved it.

I don't remember this boy's name, but he came up and told me he was a cancer survivor himself. It was so great to hear about his success story. I have such a special place in my heart for cancer kids. They are such incredible and brave warriors. 

After the assembly they announced that they had already raised $1600 for Make-A-Wish! They had a goal of $5,000 and they were well on their way. It was such a great experience and I was so glad we could be part of it.

A few other things: Cottonwood presented a check to Make-a-Wish before Christmas break and ended up raising $6,000! So awesome. Also, another funny thing (that I don't have a photo of, but I have the newspaper) the local Murray newspaper did an article on Magnus and the Cottonwood fundraiser. Nobody even asked us for permission and we found out that apparently if they don't use the last name, they don't have to ask for permission. So I had a bunch of people text me telling me what a cool article that was in the paper about Magnus, along with photos from the assembly. It was fun to see that. 

Also, the kids at Cottonwood wanted to see Magnus again, so they had him come back to a spirit assembly in February (on my birthday, actually) and had him hand out prizes at the assembly, because they just love him so much. He was so happy to be back. The whole student body also sung Happy Birthday to me. It was embarrassing, but so cute. 

We are so happy we got to have such an incredible experience and we love Make-A-Wish and Cottonwood High!

Lastly, if you're interested in watchingthe video Andy made, click HERE.

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