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Start a medical referral

Please select the option below that best describes you.

I'm a medical specialist looking to refer my patient.

I'm a social worker helping a family through their child's medical journey.

I'm a nurse looking to refer a child in my care.

I'm a General Practitioner looking to refer a patient.

Who is eligible for a wish?

Make-A-Wish supports children and teens with a critical illness. To be eligible, a child should be:

  • 3 - 18 years old
  • living in Australia
  • experiencing a life-threatening illness or medical condition

Please note, our wishes are not just for children with terminal illnesses – many wish children go on to beat their illnesses and live healthy lives.

See further eligibility criteria information below.

Age criteria

  • Make-A-Wish Australia grants wishes to Australian children and teens aged between 3 and 18 years old.

  • We accept all applications completed from the child's third birthday, until the day of their 18th birthday - although actual wish experiences may still take place after this time.

  • Younger children are eligible to receive a wish hamper, which is a selection of age-appropriate toys for children under 3. If the child continues to be medically eligible following their 3rd birthday, they can also apply for a Wish Journey from this time.

Medical criteria

  • Make-A-Wish grants wishes to children experiencing a life-threatening condition or illness.

  • We accept all applications for life-threatening medical conditions which include, but are not restricted to: leukaemia and other childhood cancers, cystic fibrosis, certain types of muscular dystrophy and cardiac disorders. Please contact us for a full list of eligibility criteria.
  • The child's treating medical specialist has the final say on medical eligibility, and must approve the child's application before we can proceed.

Additional criteria

  • In fairness to the many hundreds of sick kids who apply each year, a child who has previously received a wish from us*, or any other wish-granting organisation either in Australia or overseas (including Starlight Foundation), isn't eligible.
    *Wish hamper recipients are an exception.

We're here to help

If you have any questions about the application process, please call the Wish team on 1800 032 260 or email [email protected]

How medical referral works

At the top of this page, select the option that best represents your relationship to the child you're referring. Complete the form that opens. It should take approximately 5 minutes.

Once we have parental consent, we’ll contact the child’s treating medical specialist to assess medical eligibility and approve the application. Please see eligibility criteria above for more info.

Once the application is approved, we’ll work closely with the family, their local Make-A-Wish volunteers and the broader #WishForce community to capture and bring an incredible Wish Journey to life – with every wish as unique as the child who imagined it!

Wish FAQs

Our wishes are designed to complement medical treatment, so we recommend that you apply for a wish as soon as you can! You don't need to know what your wish will be, or be ready for it to come true.

Once you're on a Wish Journey, we can start providing support, distraction and fun activities while you discover what you wish will be and then start looking forward to it coming true. You can always put a wish on hold if the timing isn't right, and you'll have a say in when the wish comes true.

So there's really no reason not to get started on your Wish Journey today!

There is no standard length of time for a Wish Journey. Each wish is carefully considered and designed to meet the needs of the child and their family. Depending on their medical journey, educational commitments, personal situation and wish choice, a Wish Journey could happen within a week in some urgent situations, or we could support kids for a period of 18 months to 2 years. It really depends on the child’s unique circumstances.

We work in partnership with sick children, their families and medical teams to design and deliver wish experiences that are as unique as the children who imagine them.

No two wishes are alike, from the simple to the seemingly impossible – we’ve made unicorns fly, sent kids to the moon and even helped Australia’s youngest ever cricket captain don the baggy green. For more examples of the types of wishes we grant, explore our wish stories.

Make-A-Wish Australia is committed to safeguarding children and young people, always acting in their best interests to keep them safe.

We actively work to provide an environment where all children and young people, regardless of race, culture, religion, or ability, feel empowered to unlock their imaginations to discover their own unique wish in a world free from limitations and judgement.

We have zero tolerance for child abuse, and consider any form of emotional, physical, sexual abuse or neglect, as intolerable under any circumstances.

Everyone working at Make-A-Wish Australia is responsible for the care and protection of children and reporting information about child abuse.

We grant wishes for children and teens aged 3-18years that are diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. You can find a full explanation of our medical eligibility criteria here: How To Apply For A Wish & Embark On A Wish Journey - Make-A-Wish Australia (

Each and every day, Make-A-Wish Australia brings amazing people together to grant life-changing wishes for children with a critical illness. Wishes are designed to complement medical treatment, supporting families and empowering sick children with hope and joy when they need it most.