News / Calgary

Children’s Wish Foundation granting more wishes than ever

The wish-granting foundation has expanded to include children with serious neurological and genetic disorders

Penny Binda (left), Colleen Pomkoski and David Pomkoski have been granted a wish by the Children’s Wish Foundation, making three-year-old Colleen the 2,000th wish granted in Alberta.

Jennifer Friesen / For Metro

Penny Binda (left), Colleen Pomkoski and David Pomkoski have been granted a wish by the Children’s Wish Foundation, making three-year-old Colleen the 2,000th wish granted in Alberta.

The only time Colleen Pomkoski is free to move without her wheelchair is when she’s in the water.

The three-year-old suffers from epilepsy and cerebral palsy, which puts her in the hospital for months on end. But her parents, Penny Binda and David Pomkoski, say that her eyes light up when she’s swimming.

“There’s this look of contentment on her face when she’s in the pool,” said David. “It’s like a freedom for her, because she’s able to move the body that, right now, doesn’t want to move properly.”

And now, thanks to the Children’s Wish Foundation, they might be able to give her that contentment every day.

On Thursday morning, the foundation announced an expansion in their wish granting by including children with serious neurological and genetic disorders, including cerebral palsy.

Colleen became the foundation’s 2,000th wish granted in Alberta, and is now deciding between a swim/spa for Colleen to swim in daily, or a Disney cruise to give her the chance to touch the ocean.

“We realized a number of kids were slipping through the cracks because they weren’t necessarily on the list of illnesses that granted a wish,” said Kyla Martin, foundation director. “So we moved towards a set of life-threatening, high-risk principles, because (these children) are also deserving of a wish.”

The foundation has launched the More Wishes More Wonders campaign, in hopes of raising $10-million by 2021 to help these children get their wishes.

“How do you bundle up hope and give it to somebody else?” said Penny, as her eyes filled with tears. “This is exactly that. It helps us get through the hard times. We get to give her experiences that we’d otherwise never be able to give her. It’s hope.”

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