When Ryan Molden started looking for volunteer opportunities, he wanted to make sure he could see the tangible impact of his work. The software engineer had volunteered with several non-profits in the past, but really wanted a place where he could have a direct connection with the people being served.
That’s what brought him to Make-A-Wish® Alaska and Washington, where he donates his time a wish-granting volunteer.
“The impact of the time you’re giving is immediately tangible,” he said. “You put in an hour and you’ve accomplished something toward this wish. You’ve done something that’s undeniably beneficial.”
Ryan quickly found that he can dedicate his time working on wishes based on his schedule, and he helps out with airport greets, events and wish enhancements when time allows.
But no matter how much time he can carve out each month, one thing remains constant: the joy he gets from being part of a wish come true.
“To know that a child is going through a tough time that’s really draining and challenging ... and you can step in, just for a moment, and help them be a kid again,” he said. “It’s just an amazingly good feeling.”
“You can see that you’re giving (a child) a piece of their life that isn’t just consumed by the illness that they’re going through,” he said. “Their whole life becomes consumed with this illness ... in a wish, they get to forget about that ... they get that time where they can get a respite from all that stuff.”
You, too, can make wishes come true as a wish-granting volunteer. We know that you're busy and that you want to make a difference, but a little bit of your time will have a big impact.