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Can someone help me with a dilema

Guest bebe

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This has nothing to do with being an ex Chrisitan, but it *is* a rant.

i am a volunteer with the make a wish foundation. If you are unfamiliar, this is an organization that grants wishes to children who are terminally ill.

Wish granting volunteers like myself travel in pairs out to the child's home to interview the child and family. Then we submit thepaperwork and get the child their wish from donations to the organization. It is very rewarding, and I wish I could just quit my job and do it all day long.

With the hurricanes, there is a great need for long distance wish granting. I told make a wish that I would take on the case of a 13 year old girl in a very rural community about 200 miles away. I have the same partner pretty much all the time. So I called him and asked him if he was okay with going, and that I would drive. I told him how far it was, and he agreed. Then I told the make a wish office that he and I would take it. She gave me the referral, and I called my partner to see when would be a good time to go out there. At this point, he said that he just looked at the map after he told me he would go, and it was too far for him after all. He said with driving, it would be a good 12 hour day, and he wasn't willing to do that (even though i was driving and paying for gas).

I called make a wish back, and the lady there said, that considering the circumstances, I could just go ahead and do the interview by myselfbecause there was such a shortage of volunteers willing to travel. I said ok, and called the family to set up a good time. We made a day for next Sunday. I talked to both the mother and the 13 year old girl. They sound like the nicest people in the world and can't wait to see me.

Then, the next day, the make a wish office called me at work and told me that it was absolutely against the organization's rules to have a volunteer conduct an interview by themselves. The woman who told me that I could go by myself was new and didn't know- like me, she thought that if the situation warranted it, it would be ok.

They said it was "for my safety". Don't know what that means.

All efforts were made by me and them to get me a new partner, and NO ONE wants to go to the country. NO ONE.

I feel so bad, and so helpless, because the girl can't wait to see me. She is 13 with a brain tumor. Probably doesn't have that much time even to live. I have spent all of my adult life trying to use my life to help children in any way I could, and this is about the millionth time I have been unable to succeed because of red tape.

I was thinking of just GOING ANYWAY. Come Sunday morning, just get up, gas the car and hit the road. Interview the child and come back to town, drop the interview paper work in Make a wish's office drop box and be like, here, here's what the kid wants.

What are they going to do, fire me? I don't get paid for this. I have past regrets of not succeeding at helping children because of silly rules that wouldn't have hurt to break.

If I let a dying kid down, I will feel so extremely bad. It will be one of those things that for the rest of my life, I will every once in a while think about and get that pang of "I should have".

What would you do if you were me?

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They said it was "for my safety".  Don't know what that means. 

It could have some merrits that some people aren't that good that call for help. And they could be living in really bad neighborhoods.


Do you have a friend that could go with you? So at least you're not alone?


One problem I see is that even if you go to the family, will your organization accept their application since you (as not authorized) did the interview?

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I don't know. I probably won't do that. I am not very good at not following the rules, although I often wish I was.

One thing I do expect, however, is that if it's necessary to cancel this, then *they* be the ones to make the cancellation phone call, not me.

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That's just heartbreaking, bebe. The one who suffers is this poor girl who got her hopes up, and her family. Does this mean they are going to ignore the girl, or just delay her request?


Also, a suggestion? If you have to cancel, it might be better to call the family yourself and explain, for both your and their sakes. It might help to ease any guilt you might feel, and it might be easier for the family than some bureaucrat telling them. Just a thought...


Gotta love the red tape - has it ever helped anyone anywhere?

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Guest Challenger


I was thinking of just GOING ANYWAY. Come Sunday morning, just get up, gas the car and hit the road. Interview the child and come back to town, drop the interview paper work in Make a wish's office drop box and be like, here, here's what the kid wants.


Hey bebe,


Say "to hell with the red tape", and if you can go, do it. The child doesn't have that kind of time to wait on nitpicking. And she doesn't deserve it, either.


If "Make-A-Wish" gives you the boot, there are plenty of other organizations who would love to have someone like you as a volunteer. Seek one out, should it become necessary.


Good luck. And thank you for caring about someone in need.



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Seconding the suggestion to just take a friend. If it really is for your safety, and they don't have a problem with going on just your opinion, then this is the most reasonable solution. It could be anyone who doesn't mind blowing a day riding with you to see this person.


I mean, a volunteer is a volunteer right?

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Little late bebe..


Pack your 38 Special, and go..


If you haven't yet made this trip, do so well protected and so armed..


Can't see that going to visit an ill kid on your time, just happening to have the needed paperwork in your car handy to be filled out, is gonna hurt much..


'Taint much walking or running in the Lower 48 that your loaded 38 isn't going to take care of should the need for that kind of business arrive.



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