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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Connect With A Wish

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Nonprofit Overview

Mission: Connect With a Wish works to connect the wishes and needs of children in Virginia Beach foster care with the generosity of our community. We provide the resources and support needed to give these children the opportunity to grow into positive and productive members of our community.

Results: our many committees are working to positively enhance the lives of children in foster care through Youth council (Youth leadership), Birthday Brigade and supporting Success (supporting older youth going into independent living).

Target demographics: children in the foster care system in Virginia Beach

Geographic areas served: Virginia Beach

Programs: Connect With a Wish works to connect the wishes and needs of children in Virginia Beach foster care with the generosity of our community. We provide the resources and support needed to give these children the opportunity to grow into positive and productive members of our community.

Community Stories

14 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Connect with a Wish is amazing! They provide so many different resources for the children of Norfolk and Virginia Beach. There are many ways for the community to get involved to help aid the children that are currently in foster care. I have also witness Connect with a wish continue to help the children once they of age. AMAZING!

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Connect With A Wish is the absolute best organization I have worked with thus far!!! They have been a consistent, reliable source for the children and families we serve. Their organization goes above and beyond to ensure not only the needs, but the wishes of our families are met. There is no request too big or too small for them. I have had the pleasure of working with them as a professional, as well as volunteering with my family. They are a contributing factor to many of our families success.

This picture was taken at the Pungo Wine Festival-2017

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am Myra Hawkins a Foster/Adoptive parent with the city of Virginia Beach. When CCW came on board to support our Foster children, I admit I was afraid they would be around for a limited amount of time and then they would leave us as the others had done in the past. One organization employee stole the Christmas money donated and we were left scrambling to get things for the kids at Christmas. What a feeling of hurt and disappointment! But along comes this wonder organization named Connect With A Wish! CCW has been a God send! I call Joy my Fairy God Mother and her team are the little fairies that make all wishes come true! There has not been a wish that was not granted to my kids in care, not one request not fulfilled. The Christmas celebrations are the best ever! It is always a theme, always a grand production that makes each kid feel extra special! Not only does CCW make personal dreams come true for the kids, but CCW goes above and beyond with community actives that are always above and beyond fun and excitement! CCW includes family and focus on making the whole family feel special and loved. What's in it for them you may ask your support in volunteering when possible, your support when they have events and your commitment to the children in your home. I am so very happy CCW stands with our kids, with us as parents and with our agency to help make great lasting impressions . Thank you seems so small for all you do and have done, but believe me it is a very big thank you from a heart that is grateful, and appreciative of everything you continue to do for the kids. Love you guys beyond the moon! I can't thank you enough from my heart.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Connect With A Wish is an amazing organization! They go above and beyond to provide support for children in foster care and also to provide them with typical childhood experiences that children in care sometimes miss out on. When our foster child was placed with us two days before his birthday Connect With A Wish was ready with gifts and even a cake!

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been a part of the foster care professional community for over 24 years and never have I seen anyone with a total love and support of the children they serve. There is no request to big or small that they don't do their best to fulfill. I have seen many a child have a complete change in behavior and attitude because they feel that they are supported and someone is listening. They help bring dreams and wishes true to a community that often gets left behind. They make sure the children and youth know that they too matter and that their dreams are just as important as anyone else weather it is taking a ballet class, having a room make-over or attending a 4 year university. Thank you CWW for all that you do!

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Seeing all the organization does for Virginia Beach foster children is so awe inspiring. Their energy and drive is unbelievable. I know first hand all they do for the children and their sacrifices to do it. Few people realize they also help the foster parents and other children in need. They go above and beyond any charity I have ever seen or dealt with. Angels on Earth!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

An amazing organization that is supporting and encouraging kids in foster care here in VA Beach! I can only imagine what a tremendous and encouraging resource they are to the social workers as well. Miracles are happening here.

1 Laurie Mayo P.

Donor

Rating: 5

We've seen first hand how Connect With a Wish helps local foster children. Joy Rios, the founder and her family and volunteers have dedicated countless hours and resources to better the lives of children in foster care. They have identified and put steps in place to tackle the big issues these children and young adults face daily. Unfortunately, most people don't even realize how hard it is for children in foster care. CWW has made a HUGE impact on our community and with continued help and support they will continue to change lives! I highly recommend Connect With a Wish!

1 Kellie C.3

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I have been foster parents for five years. Our foster children have been given so many opportunities through Connect with a Wish, including dancing lessons, summer camps, and trips to many area attractions.CWW has also held many parties for the kids and families for holidays and back to school and give a birthday bag each year. It’s fun to attend these events with the local kids and receive some things that really help out and make our kids happy!

2 Kimberly H.7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love the work that CWW does! It works to educate the local community on foster care needs and to fill a gap for foster children/youth. Non-profit organizations such as CWW provide opportunities for compassion and unity in the community.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The efforts of this organization and the lasting impact CWW has had on Virginia Beach is inspiring. Joy has the most giving heart and is always willing to share her time & energy as well as trial and errors with anyone that has the slightest interest in her work. The foundation is pure, honest, and hard working. From the Cocktail & Cupcakes fundraiser to the Pungo Wine Festival, they have done everything they can to involve your average joe's with your biggest companies in a cause that easily goes unnoticed. They have helped children be children and brought a community together. If you ever want to donate or volunteer, CWW is as "non-profit" as they get. You can count on every dime you donate going to the kids in foster care who are often jipped of simple opportunities we take for granted like having their own beds or going to soccer camp. Thanks for all you do CWW!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When a child is removed from their home into an unfamiliar place, comfort items are provided free, and on birthdays, a gift is shared. This group is doing good work for all Hampton Roads.

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I had the opportunity to complete my internship with Connect With a Wish during the Spring 2018 semester. I was amazed at all the services provided by this organization to the children in foster care in the Virginia Beach area. Being apart of the various events that help the children in care feel confident in themselves was self rewarding! The youth groups attended monthly life benefiting topic meetings that will help them succeed regardless of their current situation. I also had the opportunity to part take in the Annual Pungo Wine Festival where ALL of the proceeds benefited the children in foster care was phenomenal. To see our community come together regardless of weather, to provide more opportunities and funds for the foster care population was amazing! I could not have picked a better organization to complete my internship requirements for Old Dominion University. I now have the opportunity to work along side the Founder/President Joy Rios, helping her fulfill the services that Connect With a Wish provides to the children in foster care. Connect With a Wish is just an overall amazing organization that has left an impacting impression on our surrounding community, by bringing more awareness to the foster care population.

3 Ryan D.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Connect With A Wish has gone above and beyond to meet the needs of the foster kids in its community. It was an absolute pleasure working with them!