Make-A-Wish goes virtual for annual fundraiser

Published: Oct. 30, 2020 at 7:00 PM CDT
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ABERDEEN, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - It was a tough decision for Gerry Likness and Laurie Danforth when planning for the 28th annual Make-A-Wish fundraiser in Watertown when considering the implications of the ongoing pandemic. Now, the event is being held entirely online, featuring a virtual silent auction. But Danforth says that the event had to go on.

“We just knew it was in the best interests for us, for our volunteers, for our wish kids, for everybody that we needed to think out of the box and go a different avenue.” Danforth says.

More than 50 packages will be available for auction, with items donated from individuals and local businesses. And Likness says says that they’ve already received supportive feedback from donors and participants.

“When we would follow up after we’d sent a letter, they would have items ready. They’d already been thinking about it since summer. And sometimes if we didn’t get to them right away, someone would call us and say, ‘You know, we got a donation. When can you come in and pick it up?’” Likness says.

Both say that they knew that the amount raised this year could be affected by the pandemic, as well as being held entirely online. But Likness says that many have already given to the organization, and that they’ll continue to do their best to grant wishes.

“We just trusted that people who could, would. And they have made monetary donations and donated items for packages. Wishes continue whether you have an event or not.”

The virtual auction began Wednesday, and goes through November 6th. More information about Make-A-Wish and the ongoing auction can be found here.

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