Meet Grace, over 10 years on from wish day
Grace is a powerful 18-year-old kicking goals in her career and loving life. Until you hear her amazing story and understand her strength, you would never know that when she was five years old she was battling acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.
Now, over a decade on Grace’s gratitude and experience have given her determination to spread hope to families and kids like her. Wow! What a lady.
You are an inspiration to so many people at Make-A-Wish, tell us how you are you doing now?
I’m studying a double degree and giving back to my community. My diagnosis has been a blessing in a way, it has shaped who I am and shaped my future. So many beautiful things have come out of it… I never thought I would say that and I know it sounds weird in a way!
Tell us about your wish for a space you could play with your family?
The inspiration was a wish my whole family could all use. I was feeling isolated from being in hospital all the time and we missed out on a lot of family time. It was an incredible wish because we were able to come together and be a normal family.
What is the power of a wish for you?
A wish has a lifetime impact because they are so magical and create the most amazing memories. A child can wish for the simplest thing and Make-A-Wish make it so special for the child and family. That sort of generosity and magic stays with you forever and it impacts your whole life so positively. The power of a wish is so incredible because it impacts not only you as the child but your family, friends, community. A wish spreads positivity throughout the whole hospital ward.
What’s your message for families battling like yours did?
One of the biggest messages I try to get across is that you can go on and be healthy – I’m healthy, I’m at uni and my diagnosis is now effecting me in a positive way. It’s actually guided me. I want all families to know that there is a whole community that is backing you. It’s such a powerful thing to know that you are not alone.
What inspired you to be a Wish Ambassador?
I was quite young when I was diagnosed so I don’t remember much. One thing I do remember is how hard it was for my whole family, my mum lived with me in the hospital and had some awful days.
I remember one day mum got introduced to an older person who was in long term remission from my same illness. This gave mum strength, which she needed so much.
This experience taught me how important it is for families to see kids come out the other side and motivates me to spread my message.