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Make-A-Wish Connecticut marks a major milestone

TRUMBULL -- This spring, Make-a-Wish Connecticut is celebrating its 3,000th wish.

Nicole Miles is in the business of granting wishes.

“It’s amazing," she said. "It doesn’t really feel like a real job.”

The Fairfield grad started with Make-a-Wish Connecticut as an intern and today she’s on the team full-time.

“I don’t think it has any boundaries or barriers," she said.  "Everybody can identify with it, so sick children are either people’s worst fears or it is something they have been through.”

At the non-profit’s headquarters in Trumbull, more than a dozen staffers are bringing roughly 250 wishes to life every year for sick kids across the state, at a cost of about $10,000 each.

CEO Pam Keough addressed what she thinks Make-A-Wish continues to resonate with the community.

“For Make-A-Wish, you really get to see the connection of where your dollars go to," said Keough. " If I give you some money, you know exactly which kid you were going to help. I think that is very different from some other organizations. You can really see the direct impact of what you’re doing.”

Those donations are making a difference. More than 30 years after getting off the ground, the organization is celebrating!

For Miles, her first wish was her favorite. It was a party for a 13-year-old named Sydney, who was battling cancer.

“I think it is my favorite wish because we got to see her whole family, friends and community come together for an amazing night and a fun celebration but I think they were celebrating a lot more than a birthday,” said Miles.

From getting a dream treehouse, to touring America’s ballparks, and traveling the world, Keough admits it’s hard to pick a favorite. The largest wish ever granted was a replica Fenway Park for a little boy with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

"Every day he can look out at his Fenway Park, he can announce the game, he can play with a ball with some friends,” said Keough.

Something the Make-A-Wish team hopes he’ll enjoy for years to come, as they wait by the phones for the next family to call.

“I hope they call us," said Miles. "I hope they let us make their wishes come true.”