#021 – You have heard of Make-A-Wish, but do you know what they do? Join us for this inspiring episode to learn more about how Make-A-Wish grants wishes to kids with critical illnesses and how two college students created a 5K road race series to fundraise for the cause.
- Christina Alt joins us from Make-A-Wish CT to share their national and local programs; along with some inspiring stories.
- Connor Ratte shares his inspiration for creating the road race and what he has learned along the way.
- Sean McHugo talks about the different 5K road race options and how you can be a part of it no matter where you are.
Christina Alt Christina Alt is the Donor Experience Manager, responsible for creating and maintaining the annual stewardship plan to steward and cultivate long-term relationships with all Make-A-Wish constituents. She also manages our Kids for Wish Kids and Wishmakers on Campus programs, including Choose A Challenge. Christina formally joined the Make-A-Wish Connecticut team in January 2017 after having been a volunteer wish granter for 10+ years. Previously, she worked for a multi-channel affinity marketing company in Stamford where she gained experience in customer care operations, quality, and training as well as account management and retail sales training. Christina earned a B.S. in Marketing from Central Connecticut State University and has lived in Connecticut almost her entire life. She currently lives in Hamden, CT with her husband, son, and adorably misbehaved goldendoodle.
Connor Ratte Connor Ratte is a Business Management major at UConn. He became involved with Choose-A-Challenge and Make-A-Wish CT during his sophomore year there and fell in love with it instantly. As a former competitive high school and collegiate runner with a lot of connections in the running world, he came up with the idea to create the Make-A-Wish CT 5k Road Race as a fundraiser for the charity. Due to a very successful first-year event, he has continued to organize the event for the past couple of years and they are now adding a second Make-A-Wish Road Race this year. He is also now an outdoor sports enthusiast who wants to travel around the world, making Choose-A-Challenge and Make-A-Wish CT a perfect fit for him.
Sean McHugo Sean McHugo is a student at Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic, Connecticut. He is currently studying Business Administration and pursuing a minor in Communication, and plans to graduate in May. Sean is a co-director for the Make-A-Wish CT 5k Road Race Series and has run Varsity Cross Country throughout high school and college, with his team recently taking first place in the Little East Cross Country Championship this past fall (virtually).
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Richard Conner 0:01
Welcome to Episode 21. Today we’re going to hear an inspiring story about how to college students partnered with Make-A-Wish Connecticut to do their part to help make wishes come true with their Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Race Series. Hope you enjoy. Here’s what you can look forward to on this episode of inspire virtual runs podcast.
Connor Ratte 0:25
When we came across Choose A Challenge, we have never heard of it before, but it kind of piqued our interest. So we went over and we talked to the people that are kind of running the table are involved in Choose A Challenge at the time. And we were hooked immediately, you know, we found out you know, we get to go on an awesome trip. But kind of the big part of it was you know, fundraising for Make-A-Wish. And that kind of caught my eye because I’ve never really fundraised before, but I’d heard and Make-A-Wish you know, through watching like sports that or that kind of stuff and kind of just seemed like the nationwide wishes they had done and I always thought they were super cool.
Welcome to Inspire Virtual Runs Podcast, whether you are new to running or seasoned. Get tips and the inspiration that you need to achieve your health and fitness goals. Now, here’s your host Richard Conner
Richard Conner 1:14
Hi, everyone. Welcome to Inspire Virtual Runs Podcast. I am here with three guests today. We have Christina Alt from Make-A-Wish Connecticut chapter. And we also have Connor Ratte and Sean McHugo, who are the organizers for the Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Race Series. Christina is the donor experience manager at Make-A-Wish responsible for creating and maintaining the annual stewardship plan to steward and cultivate long term relationships with all Make-A-Wish constituents. She also manages their Kids for Wish Kids and Wishmaker is on campus programs, including Choose a Challenge. Connor is a business management major at UConn. He became involved with choose a challenge and Make-A-Wish Connecticut during his sophomore year and fell in love with it instantly. As a former competitive High School and collegiate runner with a lot of connections in the running world, he came up with the idea to create the Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Race as a fundraiser for the charity. Sean is a business administration major at Eastern Connecticut State University. He is a co director for the Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Race Series and has run varsity cross country throughout high school and college with his team recently taking first place in the Little East cross country championship this past fall. I am excited to have Christina, Conner, and Shawn here with us today. Welcome to the show.
Christina Alt 2:52
Thanks, Richard excited to be here.
Richard Conner 2:55
So let me kick things off by saying that I’m excited for this conversation, you know, Make-A-Wish is a well known organization. And I’m happy that we have the opportunity to not only raise awareness about the great work that’s being done here, but also make the connection with running through the 5K races. So this is truly a wonderful opportunity. So Christina, I like to start the conversation with you to give our listeners some background who may not be familiar with Make-A-Wish. Can you tell us a little bit about the organization and the mission and some of the work that you do there?
Christina Alt 3:32
Yes, absolutely. Well, I just want to start by again saying thank you for including Make-A-Wish in your podcast, I’m so happy to be here representing our organization and what we do. And for those of you who are not familiar with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, we grant life changing wishes to local Connecticut children with critical illnesses. And I want to just to touch on what you kind of alluded to how wonderful, you know, merging endurance treks or running with nonprofit charity partner how wonderful that can be. And one of the things I love most how closely our missions align. And I’ll speak to a little bit about the Kids for Wish Kids and Wishmakers on campus programs that you referenced and how they engage students, schools and youth organizations and philanthropy and service activities in partnership with our organization and at the same time that you know, they’re really encouraging community service leadership, volunteerism and teamwork as well as building hands on experience fundraising experience to help make wishes come true. And we’re so grateful for our school communities and for choose a challenge because, you know, without them I mean their support really allows us to grant local wishes right and choose a challenge specifically provides students with an opportunity to push their limits committing to an endurance trek that’s accessible, fulfilling and affordable. And they get to challenge themselves both mentally and physically all while fundraising for a cause that’s close to their heart. So every day more than 15 wishes are being granted across the nation wishes that inspire hope, build strength, uplift spirits, and encouraged the belief in the impossible. And our wish kids are forced to be brave and overcome mental and physical hurdles, similar to what I’m sure one might face during a 5K, a marathon and endurance hike, so on and so far. So I think that, you know, when your body starts to feel the pain, or maybe mentally, you’re exhausted, and you just want to quit, it’s an opportunity to really dig in and find the resilience that our wish kids exhibit every single day. And I just want to remind everyone to think of all of that and what they’ve been through and just keep pushing.
Richard Conner 5:54
Okay. All right. So let’s kind of dig in a little bit more and just learn more about it. So you talked a little bit about the mission. You talked about the the different programs. So let’s talk about like, what kind of wishes maybe we’ll start there, what kind of wishes are being granted for these kids?
Christina Alt 6:14
Yeah, absolutely. So, right now, due to the pandemic, our revenue is actually down 50%. And we have a 150 wish kids who are waiting for their travel wishes to happen as soon as it’s safe to do so. But that doesn’t mean that we’re not granting wishes. We’re still granting the most amazing wishes that we can, at this time, like puppy wishes, shopping sprees, room makeovers, and pools just to name a few and the wishes that we are able to grant right now we’re calling “Hope at home”. Because now more than ever, hope is really essential. And this year, I think we could all really use an extra dose of hope and support more than ever.
Richard Conner 6:58
Definitely, definitely. There’s, this is definitely a challenging time for everybody, and especially these kids, I’m sure. So that’s wonderful that you’re still able to do this during during this time. That’s great.
Christina Alt 7:10
Yeah, yeah, it’s really awesome. Actually, yesterday, we granted a puppy wish for a four year old girl from Wallingford, who’s fighting a nervous system disorder, she got the cutest mini golden retriever. And it will really I think it’ll really be a comfort dog for her. And, you know, one thing that we’ve seen time and time again, and I think we’re seeing more so now that the pandemic hit is that a wish impacts not only the wish child but their whole family as well. And this little girl’s wish came true yesterday, and her parents kept it a surprise for her sister as well, who was turning 10 in just a couple of days. So needless to say, they were both squealing in excitement when they saw their new furry friend, which is super cute.
Richard Conner 7:54
That is cute. That’s sweet. Very cool. Thank you for sharing that story with us. You know, let’s talk a little bit about these programs, and maybe the fundraising aspect of the work that you’ve done. So you mentioned that revenue is down this past year, you have a waiting list for for the kids. So tell us a little bit of like, how does it work in terms of the fundraising as it relates to these programs that you’re running?
Christina Alt 8:19
Sure, I’ll speak to Choose A Challenge specifically, because of Sean and Connor are a part of the Choose A Challenge program. And what they do is they take college students from campuses across the country on choose a challenge takes college students from campuses across the country on adventure travel trips. And their model is pretty unique in that it allows the students to fundraise the cost of each trip with 50% going to charity and the other 50% going towards trip costs. So we’ve partnered with choose a challenge since 2016. And it began with just a few students from UConn. And since then, together, we’ve expanded to Quinnipiac University as well. And our teams have raised more than $100,000 over the years, which is truly incredible. So students who are participating in a challenge, get really creative on how to meet meet their fundraising goals. And Sean and Connor are a testament to that and have truly stepped up to organize these five keys, which is just really impressive. You know, it’s we’re so we’re so grateful for their support.
Richard Conner 9:28
All right, perfect. Well, I think this is a good segue then to talk a little bit more about Choose A Challenge and the specific race that the Connor and Shawn have developed. So maybe we’ll pivot to you Connor and why don’t you tell us a little bit about like, how you initially created the Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K road race as fundraiser and what inspired you to create this particular race?
Connor Ratte 9:54
Yeah, so it all started in my sophomore year, here at UConn where I’ve kind of just recently stopped running at UConn. And I was kind of looking for something to fill that void, I’m going to take up a lot of my time, so I was naturally just looking for something to fill my free time with another activity to join. Every year UConn has a big Involvement Fair, where basically all the clubs on campus, kind of just wind on the main strip, and all the students can just walk around and you know, try to see what interests them. So I was walking with one of my friends who ultimately ended up taking the challenge with me. And when we came across to the challenge, we have never heard of it before, but it kind of piqued our interest. So we went over, we talked to the people that were kind of running the table, and we’re involved in Choose A Challange at the time. And we were hooked immediately, you know, we found out, you know, we get to go on an awesome trip. But kind of the big part of it was, you know, fundraising for Make-A-Wish. And that kind of caught my eye because I’ve never really fundraise before, but I’d heard him Make-A-Wish, you know, through watching like sports that are that kind of stuff, and kind of just seemed like the nationwide wishes they had done. And I always thought they were super cool. So that immediately caught my eye. Then we went to the info meeting a week or two later, just to get more info on it. And I think Christina was there and talk more about will make which does and how they’re involved with the program. And after that I was immediately hooked and signed up right away. So along with that, like we said, the biggest part of that was fundraising money. And the goal was to fundraise $6,000 and I’d never fundraised before, let alone $6,000 you know, we were full time students. So I was like, I have no idea what I’m gonna do, I’m just kind of going in blindly. But I figured I was gonna make it happen. You know, I figure it out. Over time we had, we had a handful of months to fundraise. So I was still feeling optimistic about it. Like I said, I didn’t really know what I was going to do, I’d never done before. And then I think it was a few weeks later, I was think I was on an elliptical at the gym or something and kind of just hit my mind. I was like, let’s just do you know, let’s let’s do like a big 5K or something like that. A lot of people were like talking about doing big sales and kind of smaller events like that. But I kind of wanted to do kind of one big event that I thought would be able to generate, you know, most if not all the fundraising goal from one thing. I remember talking to one, someone I’d run with in high school, and he had put on a five k road race, I think it was a senior year of high school and he had gotten I think about 200 people to show up to his race, it was able to generate, you know, a good amount of fundraising from his event. And I was like, if I can emulate that, then I might be able to hit my phone or even go five key if it goes well. I still had no idea what I was doing. But I talked to him. And I talked to some other people I had known that have, you know, had experience with 5, 5Ks and that kind of stuff. So I kind of just gathered my information kind of slowly started hacking away at it. I came in contact like the parks and rec department and you know, the police depart all this kind of stuff that I have to do to get approved from the town, I kind of just slowly started working through it. Eventually they approved my idea. And then we kind of had the race set, and mostly good to go for the following March. So then the next few months was kind of just all about getting the details down. Just kind of advertising the race and hoping to get the word out as much as possible.
Richard Conner 12:44
Wow, that’s great. There’s a lot going on there. I mean, so first time doing the fundraiser first time organizing a 5K. And it sounds like you just kind of learned how to do it as you went so and all for a great cause. So congratulations on setting this up. Can you share a little bit about like how the past has gone? And, you know, a little bit of the success that you’ve had?
Connor Ratte 13:07
Yeah, so like I said, this was my first time I was kind of just winging it the whole time. I’d never done before. So I was just I was doing the best I could, but I didn’t really have much prior experience. I was kind of lean on, you know, advice that I got some other people. I had contacted another race director who did another race in Coventry. We kind of just got advice from people and tried to do the best I could with what I was working with top of my already busy schedule. But But yeah, like I said, we had, you know, a few months to advertise the race after we got it approved. And yeah, so it was, it was funny how it ended up being a very big success. But I think it was worth about three and a half weeks ago or so before the initial race I had about like 40 people signed up and I was like, oh boy like this, this isn’t going as well as I thought it was like, we’re just not getting that many people like, you know, I probably needed like, you know, closer to like 150 200 people to, you know, hit my fundraising goal. And it was like, what, three weeks ago and we were I was like in the 40s and all okay, I was like, you know, we’ll do the best we can, you know, keep advertising whatever the case is. And it really just took off in the last three weeks. We ended up getting, I think 180 people registered before race day. And then we ended up getting another 35 people registered on race day itself to bring the total I think it was 213 to 15. around there as well ended up getting so it was a huge success. We had t shirts that we sold did the raffle from you. We just raffled off a bunch of stuff the local business gave us. And the event total ended up fundraising I think just over $7,000, which is more than a fundraising goal. Yeah, it turned out to be huge success. We want to get more to make worse than I thought I’d be able to in the first place. And yeah, so it was a huge success. And of course, since they’re successful, I want to bring it back another year. So that was the first year success. I signed up to do Jesus challenge again last year. So I was kind of on the same timeline, getting everything ready to go. It was going to be the second race. It was scheduled to be in late March of 2020. So everything set up. We had people signed up The numbers were looking, you know, pretty similar to what we had the first year, probably no more than two weeks before race day, everything kind of shut down. So that kind of put an end to that race. But I knew I wanted to still do the race, I didn’t want to just pull out cancelin stop, you know, pursuing it, I still wanted to participate in Choose A Challenge and have the race go. And they’ll be able to put on a race not just for the participants, but also to be able to continue to give back to make wish and make it successful again. Maybe he’s a little foolish, but I was like, we’re gonna postpone it, maybe we’ll be able to do in the summer. We all know Coronavirus has gone on a little longer than probably expected. Here we are almost a full year later. So it’s essentially just a one year postponement. But this is in our third year of running, we’re doing the second iteration this year. And Sean ended up coming and taking the challenge as well. We’ve kind of worked together to set up Secretary so hopefully, we’re able to doubling that would give to Make-A-Wish this year through both these races. So we’re pretty excited about that.
Richard Conner 15:57
That’s great. Congratulations to the both of you that that’s really great success. And, you know, I’m really excited about about what’s coming next, then just thinking about all of the the wishes, right, that you’re enabling to be granted with the funds that you’ve raised, and that you plan to raise in this upcoming season. So just congratulations and great, great work there.
Connor Ratte 16:18
Christina Alt 16:19
Connor, I just want to say I’m just blown away, how much success you’ve seen coming from being pretty inexperienced for planning an event of this caliber to the first time that you hosted it, you know, bringing in over $7,000 and exceeding your fundraising goal, I know that I shared that choose a challenge participants have a set fundraising goal 50% going to the charity and 50% going towards trip costs, once they meet their fundraising goal, any additional donations that come in 100% of that goes to the charity. So we’re just so grateful for your support. And not only just the financial support, but also having over 200 people in attendance and just spreading the word on social media and in other ways that you have done. That’s, you know, just getting our name out there. And the brand awareness is just as important as the fundraising that you’re doing. So on behalf of mega wish and all the children that we serve, we want to thank you and Shawn, for your partnership, believing in the power of a wish. And I can’t wait to see how this year turns out. And despite the pandemic, I feel like it’s going to be the best year yet. So thanks again.
Connor Ratte 17:31
We’re definitely very optimistic that we can put on a good race. But yeah, like you said, just the fact that the more money we get, the more we can give it to Make-A-Wish. And I think that’s really why we’re trying to push it and not just not just to get the race happening. But we want to like be able to maximize the race and maximize the amount of people that we can safely run in the race. So yeah, we’re pretty optimistic about it. And I think it definitely helps that we’re able to fundraise for make wish that definitely makes a better name and makes people want to sign up for it even more. So we’re grateful to be able to work and Make-A-Wish in the first place and be able to put on a good event with them.
Christina Alt 18:06
Yeah, awesome. Thanks. And just to add to that, too, and our our name is one that I think most people recognize, right, Make-A-Wish most people are familiar have heard it before and may not necessarily know exactly what we do. But the brand recognition is probably helpful, right for your efforts. And though we are a national organization, we operate on the local level. So not everybody knows this, that, you know, we’re our our chapter is based out of Trumbull, Connecticut and we fundraise in the state of Connecticut to grant Connecticut wishes. So any of the money that we raise, or that, you know, external event coordinators or student fundraisers raise for us is going towards granting local Connecticut wishes, which I think is really compelling in and of itself, and something that I always try and share.
Richard Conner 18:52
Perfect. Well, thank you. Thank you again, Conner. And thank you, Christina, for adding that that’s very helpful to know and give us a little bit more insight in terms of how Make a wish operates at a national level as well as a local level. So let’s dive into the races. We’ve talked a lot about these exciting races and the success that we’ve had. And there are races that are coming up. So let’s let’s switch gears and talk about that a little bit. And I understand that there are some different options for runners. So Sean, as the co-director here for the races, can you walk us through these different options and what runners can expect?
Sean McHugo 19:28
Yeah, for sure. Currently, right now, we have two races planned. One of them is on March 20. And then the other one is on March 21. The first one was in Coventry, Connecticut. And then the second one is in Bethany Connecticut. However, because of COVID-19 and everything going on, we also opened it up for virtual running. So on the Wednesday prior, I think it’s the 17th of March. If you sign up for the virtual event on Wednesday, you can run the race anywhere can go to the course itself, do it there. Or you can go to your local track your backyard, your local neighborhood, even as long as it’s a 5K race, and you document it, and it’s verifiable, you’ll be counted in the final results. So there’s the virtual aspect of, we’re pretty excited about that. We’re excited to see where that goes, what people end up doing how far this can reach. Because if it’s virtual, that means we can go out of state borders and we’re just trying to spread the message of what the amazing things that maker wish does, we can spread that and make people aware that that would be awesome. And then on Saturday and Sunday of that week on the 20th and the 21st, we have the in person race itself, they’ll both be at 12 noon, on those days. And of course, COVID guidelines will be in place for both of those races. But we’re pretty excited for the aspect of being in person. Because since last spring, really, I know some road races have gone on. But especially during the winter months, there has been absolutely no road race is during the winter just hasn’t been possible with the guidelines that the state has put out. But recently, based on a few documents they’ve released and their plans dependent on March 1, they’re giving another update, they should be allowing in person races again. So we might be one of the first two races that go off in the state of Connecticut, once the guidelines are lifted. And we’re pretty excited for that, not only from the turnout, but to just get people out and running. Because as we all know, probably the running community is just amazing. And there are some amazing people out there. So in terms of like the guidelines, there’s two ways about road racing that we can go through. One way is multiple wave starts at 50 people or less. So basically, we’ll group people, and then when it’s your time to run, you’ll be able to go out into the course. And then there’s also a staggered start, where we give participants an open timeframe to start whenever they want with whomever they liked, or vice versa. So we are trying to offer the maximum race day experience. But given everything that’s been going on, it just isn’t possible anymore. But we want to emulate exactly what a race feels like, pre COVID and everything. And we hope to see the turnout that we’ve seen in past especially like Connor’s race and other races that they’ve been to Make-A-Wish and extremely amazing organization. Connor approached me with the idea of doing Choose a Challenge. And based on the experiences he’s had, not only just going on what Choose a Challenge offers him. But being comfortable is not ideal way to live. You want to be discomforting take on challenges that you think are way over your head. And this is definitely one of them. Of course, the fundraising is a good thing, but I just wanted to challenge myself. And this something like this for such a good cause. It’s something I had to do. And it’s been amazing to see the responses I’ve gotten, at least I know, when I went to the race director, the parks and rec director for Bethany, approaching her with the idea she was like, of course, yes, this is going to happen. We need to do this Make a wish. It’s such a great organization, I want to be a part of this. And then I’ve also received some emails from participants. Just saying like, I’m so happy you’re doing this, thank you for doing this. For example, I won’t give the name or anything but someone sent me an email saying that one of their good friend’s daughter’s had leukemia, and she’s going to possibly benefit from Make a wish. And I was just like, Wow, this is amazing. I can’t believe I’m part of this. And I’m excited to see the turnout and see what happens.
Richard Conner 23:59
Thank you so much, Sean. And well said about moving outside of your comfort zone and you’re definitely doing it for a great cause. So congratulations there. And fingers crossed right fingers crossed the this is the first live race that that happens here in Connecticut. And you all obviously have the virtual races as another option. So I just want to share a little bit about the Inspire virtual runs community, you know, there’s two elements to the virtual aspect of it. One is that it’s a virtual community where we inspire each other to run and and then the other aspect of it is virtual races. So our community runs live races and virtual races. But if you’re not really comfortable with a live race, or especially during this time of a pandemic, you know, the virtual option is certainly a great one. So really just love the fact that that you guys have both options that you’re offering here that you’re making available not only to folks in Connecticut, but outside of Connecticut as well. So fingers crossed.
Sean McHugo 24:59
Yeah, for sure. Yeah, fingers crossed.
Richard Conner 25:03
So Sean, how how can the Inspire Virtual Runs community, like find the race and sign up for it?
Sean McHugo 25:10
To find the race, everything’s online. Registration is open has been open for both races. And I’ve been posting on Facebook, you can also reach out to me via email, all that stuff, I can direct you on where to go. Perfect.
Richard Conner 25:27
Well, thank you so much, Christina, Connor, and Shawn. You know, I very much enjoyed this conversation. And I love the great work that’s being done at Make-A-Wish and this charity race to support the programs. And Christina, you gave us some really great stories about the children that are benefiting from the programs and the fundraising efforts that are going on here. So so really nice there. So Christina, maybe we’ll just wrap up with you. You know, same question, how can they Inspire Virtual Runs community find to make a wish and learn more about the Connecticut chapter and the national organization?
Christina Alt 26:05
Sure, you can both events be both runs are listed on our website, wish.org, backslash CT, that’s where you can go to find out a little bit more about what we do. You can see any upcoming events such as these two 5Ks, and also get more information on our Kids for Wish Kids. And wish makers on campus programs. So shameless plug any schools who are interested in partnering with us and giving back to the community, we can use all the support that we can get. So please do not hesitate to reach out. And right now I just want to I just also want to share, I know that I mentioned that we have 150 wishes that are currently postponed, Sean and Connor are helping us create and deliver hope to wishes that are waiting and the funds that they raised will help us to prepare to grant those wishes those travel wishes, right when it’s safe to do so. But they’re also going to absolutely help us granting the 60 projects or at home Hope at Home wishes that we’re working on right now. So the urgency is there, the need is there. And we’re just so grateful for the support of the community. And I love how Sean referenced that. One of the race participants had reached out saying that they knew somebody who either is or could be a wish kid. And we hear that time and time again, there’s always somebody who knows somebody that’s impacted by the power of a wish. And it just goes to show what an outstanding community we have in the state of Connecticut and we would not be able to grant wishes without all of you So thank you again for for having for not only you know, raising money to help make wishes come true. But for you know, even just having us participate today on the podcast, it just means so much to us.
Richard Conner 27:53
Thank you, thank you for for being here. This has been an awesome conversation. Good luck with the races. I hope you not only achieve but exceed your goals. And we’re you’re able to make these wishes come true for more children. So thanks for coming on the show.
Sean McHugo 28:09
Thank you for having me.
Connor Ratte 28:10
Thank you so much. I appreciate you giving us avenue to help spread the message even more.
Richard Conner 28:16
All right, perfect. Well, thanks again. And have a great day.
Christina Alt 28:20
You too. Thanks, guys.
Richard Conner 28:23
Thank you, Christina, Connor, and Sean for coming on the show, and sharing your inspiring story about how you’re collectively helping make wishes come true for kids with critical illnesses. So I’d like to take a moment to share my three takeaways from this conversation. The first one is learn from others. Connor talked about how he never did fundraising before and how this was new to him and he kind of learned along the way, but he reached out to others who helped them as well as those who had done this before and really helped guided him. The second takeaway is be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Sean talked a little bit about not going through life always being comfortable. And this Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Race series is a clear example of how Connor and Shawn did something outside of their comfort zone and helped others while doing it. My third takeaway is about how much need there is in the world. Christina talked about one of the program’s Hope at Home. And she mentioned that this year, we could all use an extra dose of hope more than ever. So I really hope that you take this opportunity to support Make-A-Wish Connecticut support Connor and Sean and then Make-A-Wish Connecticut 5K Road Series and really support them in the efforts to grant wishes to kids with critical illnesses. So thank you for listening. If you enjoyed this episode, please go on Apple podcasts and leave a review. If there are other topics that you’d like to hear. Please come to our website inspirevirtualruns.com, send us an email and let us know. So with that, thanks again and have a great day.
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Transcribed by https://otter.ai