Help give Jackson the gift of a wish
Jackson wishes for a snowy Christmassy adventure like in his favourite festive movies. Donate today to help make wishes like Jackson's come true.
Jackson, 5, Wilms' tumour
Why can't it snow at Christmas?
Jackson loves Christmas so much, that he wears Christmas socks all year round and watches The Grinch on repeat. But there’s one big question Jackson has: why doesn’t it snow at Christmas in Australia?
His ultimate wish is for a snowy Christmassy adventure to live out his favourite festive movies. With your help, that's exactly what can unfold for 5-year-old Jackson and his family next winter.
A huge imagination
With big hopes of seeing Santa and his reindeers, throwing snowballs at his older brothers, and, of course, wearing his favourite Christmas pyjamas – Jackson is so excited for his Christmas wish.
Jackson’s mum Brooke says he has a huge imagination, and that’s where his love for Christmas comes from.
“There's so much magic and possibility at Christmas time. You can make something so big and exciting out of it. It’s the not knowing what’s going to happen next! He loves everything about it - the tinsel, the lights, the gingerbread, the tree and the little presents.”
Jackson's wish is giving him a chance to think big and look beyond his illness.
Suddenly, a moment turned into months
Jackson was born with a dilated kidney, so he had regular scans from an early age. But at three years old, he got a persistent cough, and his mum Brooke knew something wasn't right.
It turned out to be a Wilms' tumour - a rare type of kidney cancer. Jackson urgently needed his kidney removed, so they had to rush from their home in Darwin to the specialist hospital in Brisbane 3,500km away.
It was really hard for Jackson, being isolated from his family. While he was having treatment, he wasn’t really allowed to go anywhere or do anything... He was completely removed from his whole life, and he didn't know why.Jackson's mum Brooke
The biggest shock
For Brooke, the biggest shock was being told they would need to stay in Brisbane, indefinitely.
“When we got on the plane, I thought we'd be gone for a week” says Brooke. “When we got to the hospital, we were told, ‘No, you’re not going anywhere. You need to stay here, for as long as it takes.’
Jackson and his mum were separated from his dad and two brothers for months whilst undergoing surgery and chemotherapy.
“I struggled not seeing the other boys for months and missing special occasions. David (Jackson’s dad) struggled not being able to see Jackson during such a tough time,” says Brooke.
The possibility of a wish
But Jackson’s wish gave him a chance to think big. It helped him look beyond his illness – to a future full of hope, joy and snowflakes.
“When we met with our Make-A-Wish volunteers for the first time, they told Jackson, ‘Make this wish as big as you can! Get creative and think outside the box! Coming up with different ideas took his mind off what was in front of him – his treatment. It gave him somewhere else to go.”
Given his favourite time of year and the local climate, it was no surprise that Jackson settled on the idea of going walking in a winter wonderland – just like in the Christmas movies he loves.
But it's only with your support, we can give Jackson the white Christmas he's been dreaming of.
A time to heal as a family
Brooke and the family went into autopilot during Jackson’s treatment.
“It was one day at a time. I couldn’t think too much about it because I wouldn’t be able to function or support Jackson. We just keep saying ‘this is what we're doing and there's nothing we can do about it,’ so we may as well just do the best we can,” says Brooke.
Now looking to the future, the wish is not only a time to celebrate Jackson being in remission – but it’s a time for the family to be together and make new life-long memories.
Just imagine the family’s joy when they finally make it to the snow next winter and have a proper "white Christmas" all together – with snowflakes falling and gingerbread baking, just like Jackson's always dreamt of.
Thanks to you, a child like Jackson could share the endless joy of a wish with the people they love.
We need your help to make wishes come true
There are over 900 critically ill children like Jackson who are waiting for a wish right now. Kids who need the gift of joy more than ever.
Together, we can grant their wishes this festive season. Will you help create joy that lasts a lifetime?