By Justin Swanson | LB Indy
When attorney Jennifer Zeiter moved to Laguna two years ago, she sought a philanthropic cause so that she might settle into her new community both productively and thoughtfully. Local real estate broker Cheryl Fouts recruited Zeiter to join the Women’s Circle of Wishes, a group of professional women affiliated with Make-A-Wish Orange County and Inland Empire.
“It allowed me to get to know other women and give back locally,” Zeiter explains. “It was the perfect opportunity for me.”
Now Zeiter’s group embarks on its tall goal of raising $100,000 this year, a pledge to make 100 wishes come true for children with life threatening illnesses in the Orange County area.
The Women’s Circle will be walking together this Saturday, April 27 from 8 a.m. to noon at the third annual Walk For Wishes at the Orange County Great Park in Irvine. The two-mile walk is a chance for wish recipients, their families, and wish granters to unite and raise money as well as to honor the Make-A-Wish chapter’s 30th year anniversary.
“How can you not want to help?” Zeiter asks.
She notes the incredible hardship on families coping with terminal illness. Even so, she says to watch a wish come true is “an amazing thing.”
“You make the most special day for them,” she says. “You give them hope.”
Another Laguna woman, Virginia Armstrong, will be making the walk in Irvine this Saturday as a part of her Volunteer Heroes group, a team of Make-A-Wish volunteers. Involved with Make-A-Wish since 2000, Armstrong is a wish granter, one who helps coordinate the successful achievement or realization of children’s wishes. It is among the variety of opportunities for people to contribute, along with fundraising and sponsorship.
Zeiter, who hopes to personally succeed in granting her first wish this year, encourages all to come out for the event Saturday.
“It’s a family event. You can bring your dog; it’s only two miles,” she lists. “It’s a morning outing for a good cause.”
Last year, at the second annual walk, there were 1,400 participants who managed to raise $200,000, which went on to grant 35 wishes. The goal this year is to grant 40 wishes.
On-site registration is $40 on the day of the walk. For more info, visit wishocie.org.