• By: OLM Staff

Trailblaze For Wishes encourages locals to lace up to help kids with critical illnesses

Trailblaze For Wishes is a new and easy walk/run/hike event from Make-A-Wish® Canada as part of their continuing efforts to create hope for children with critical illnesses waiting for wishes to be granted. Organizers are encouraging people to participate in the 10-week campaign which begins May 19th.

“We know that now more than ever, especially a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, people are struggling to find hope and joy,” said Lynne Hudson, CEO, Make-A-Wish Canada. “There are currently thousands of children with critical illnesses in Canada waiting for wishes to be granted, and a $16M fundraising shortfall from our last fiscal year along with that. Trailblaze For Wishes is the perfect way to focus on what we can do to keep granting wishes, literally one step at a time. This is an event that allows each of us to get active outside safely and easily, all while showing support and raising funds to help us grant life-changing wishes.”

There is no cost to register for the event, and participants can sign up as an individual or as part of a team. Over the course of the virtual challenge, participants will set their preferred distance, go at their own pace, choose their own fundraising goals, and have a shot at some exciting prizes.

Seventeen-year-old Johnny is the local ‘spokes kid’ for Trailblaze For Wishes in the Ottawa Region. Johnny has a genetic condition called Moderate Hemophilia A. When he was born his mom knew that there was a 50/50 chance that Johnny would end up with this condition. She is a carrier, and her father had the condition. They took him to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) right away for testing and the results came back positive. His condition means that his blood clots a lot slower than most people. He only has 1.5% ability to clot, which means untreated bleeds are life threatening.

ABOVE: Johnny received his wish of a home gym from Make-A-Wish on May 15, 201. 

He first learned about Make-A-Wish through a social worker when he was three, however, the family didn’t think they would qualify. It wasn’t until Johnny was at camp and met another child who had received a wish. He went home and told his mom that he would like a wish too. Johnny received his most heartfelt wish on May 15, 2021. He is big into fitness and has decided on an incredible home gym to help him stay active during the pandemic. His home gym is something that he will be able to enjoy for many years to come.

Johnny and his family would like to encourage you to sign up for Trailblaze in support of Make-A-Wish. Not only will it encourage you to stay active, but it will also help grant more wishes like his.

“The past year has been tough for everyone,” acknowledged Hudson. “We have all been impacted by the pandemic in some way or another and that’s why we are really looking forward to Trailblaze for Wishes; we can all help create hope, feel a sense of connectedness and unlock the power of a wish come true!”

For more information and to join the hundreds of participants already signed up, visit trailblazeforwishes.ca or go to the Ottawa section of the event https://makeawishca.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.event&eventID=881


Make-A-Wish® creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We are on a quest to bring every eligible child's wish to life because a wish is an integral part of a child's treatment journey. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight a critical illness. Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Make-A-Wish is the world’s leading children’s wish-granting organization, serving children in every community in Canada, and in more than 50 countries worldwide.

Since 1983, Make-A-Wish Canada has granted over 35,000 wishes across the country, over 1,000 last year alone.

For more information about Make-A-Wish Canada, visit makeawish.ca.