‘Choose a Challenge’ raises money for Make-A-Wish

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One Southington resident is calling on the community for help in raising money for Make-A-Wish Connecticut. Annelise Mackiewicz, a University of Connecticut student, will be participating in a trek to Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa with the “Choose a Challenge” club.

“We do these challenges to raise funds for different charities, and the people going on the UConn Kilimanjaro trip is raising funds for Make-A-Wish Connecticut,” Mackiewicz said. “The fundraising goal for the Kilimanjaro trip depends on the person and how much money they put down, but the base amount is $6,000 per person.”

Around 15 students will be participating in the trip. “Not only will this be a physical and mental challenge for all the participants, but we have also committed to raising funds,” she said.

Make-A-Wish Connecticut grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Wish-come-true experiences do wonders, Mackiewicz said, by providing a much-needed respite from lengthy hospital stays and medical treatments.

“They give back to a child what a serious illness can take away—the chance to simply enjoy being a kid, choose something that will inspire happiness, and spend precious time with their families,” she said.

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The organization is 100% donor-dependent, and over 80 cents of every donated dollar goes to its program services. The chapter granted 240 wishes during its most recent fiscal year and is on track to grant 250 wishes this year.

Choose a challenge club involves several different colleges and gives students an opportunity to go on different life-changing charity trips. Different challenges include Edinburgh marathon, Macho Picchu and Mount Everest Base Camp and Kilimanjaro.

“An array of people are going—some may be friends but most are strangers,” said Mackiewicz. “Although we may be strangers now, we will become very close on the trek.”

The students will travel to Africa in May.

To help Mackiewics raise money to meet her fundraising goal, visit www.igiving.com/fundraiser/annelise-mackiewicz.

To learn more about Choose a Challenge, visit www.chooseachallenge.org, and to learn more about Make-A-Wish Connecticut, visit www.ct.wish.org.