- "Wish kid" Mika Millard of Middlesex
Times may be uncertain, but Make-a-Wish Vermont hasn't stopped working to fulfill the wishes of local children with critical illnesses. The process for the 58 current "wish kids" just looks a little different these days. Typically, volunteer wish granters — the organization has around 60 of them — do at-home visits after a child or teen has been approved for a wish, to find out exactly what they want. Currently, those interactions are taking place via phone call or videoconference, with some volunteers sending the kids they're working with small gifts to keep them excited about their wish. Many travel-related wishes were granted this winter, said development and communications manager Grace Per Lee, so just a few trips have been postponed. And other wishes — like bedroom makeovers, puppies and backyard pools — can be realized even while families are quarantining at home. In February, 14-year-old Mika Millard of Middlesex, who has cystic fibrosis, was granted a wish to design a video game with the help of local game design studio Rad Magpie. Thanks to regular meetings via Zoom, that project is actually ahead of schedule, said Per Lee. The conceptual phase is almost complete, and design elements are being nailed down now. They'll be heading into production soon and expect to have a finished video game this summer.