Delivering on a wish for a seriously ill child can sometimes be a tricky proposition when an organization like Dream Come True of Western Connecticut gets a request for an African Safari or a trip to the moon. But just because a child cannot always be brought to the dream, doesn't mean the Danbury non-profit serving families in Fairfield, Litchfield and New Haven Counties stops short of trying to bring the dream to the child.
A trip to Cape Kennedy might suffice for the moon and the next best thing to a safari was found for a child enamored with
Otherwise, Dream Managers interview the child and ask for three dreams in case the earthly moons are not enough or the budget runs past $6000. Additionally, extended travel is sometimes beyond the child's medical situation, but if such a child has always wanted to dude it out as a cowboy, the dream is still in reach. The Rocking Horse Ranch in upstate New York is about 90 minutes away, she says.
On the other hand, some dreams will do without even leaving home. They go for a whole setup of video games, DVD players and other electronic offerings that would be the envy of any hooked in kid of today, she says.
Of course, having everyday dreams limited by an illness doesn't just effect the child.A family that has a child that's going through such a serious situation really effects all members of the family, she says.
So it follows then that the typical trips to Disneyland fall prey to the overwhelming constraints of the burden. Not always having time to plan vacations, she says, DCT can step in with all the arrangements and remove families from the day to day routine in favor of just the chance to breathe and finally relax.
Minus any employees, Dream Come True, which was founded by former Connecticut resident Kostas Kalogeropolous in 1984, returns upwards of 95% of donations directly into their dreams. "We are volunteer run," she says, as one of the volunteers even donates their small Danbury office.
But just because no one is paid, it doesn't mean that volunteers subsist without any return. For the Dream Managers, a dollar amount cannot be gauged against the joy in a child's eyes, she says, when they come back and say, 'guess what, you're going to Disneyland.'
As for those who might be inclined to donate and/or volunteer, Ms. Delaney makes a distinction from other non-profits that she is also involved with. I never really see who my money is helping, but with Dream Come True, I see the results directly, she concludes.
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