Apply for a wish

Do you know a child fighting a critical illness, who could benefit from a life-changing wish?

Speak to the child's health or social care professional, who will be able to submit a referral on the child's behalf. If you have any questions about the process, give us a call on 0118 304 3368 or email referrals@makeawish.org.uk and we'll be happy to help.

What is a wish?

Our wishes give seriously ill children the chance to do something extraordinary. For many children, it's an opportunity to choose something just for them – a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Every wish is as unique as the child who created it. Our Wish Visitors, who are a team of specially-trained volunteers, speak to the child and spend time with them to find out what matters most to them in the world, and what matters most to them about their wish.

Sunil and his family posing in front of the Christmas tree with his PS5.

Sunil wished to have a PS5 games console

We’re keen to get the wish capture experience right, because a child’s wish is a precious gift that helps build lasting memories, confidence and resilience.

Tough times lead a child to be eligible for a wish, and families often suffer as a result of a child being seriously ill, which is why it's important for us to include them in a child’s wish, too.

  

Leah with some papers being a teacher

Leah wished to be a teacher for the day

What are the criteria?

  • A child needs to be a UK resident, aged between three and 17 years (inclusive), and diagnosed with a critical illness. You can see the list of conditions that fall into our eligibility criteria by clicking here
  • We can only grant one wish for any child, so a child shouldn't have received a wish from us before or from another wish granting organisation. 
  • We can accept an application if we receive it on the child's third birthday, or before their 18th birthday.
Allan joking with a colleague as he sits on a police motorbike

Allan wished to be a police officer

How do I refer a child?

Tell us what your relationship is to the child for more information on how to refer a child to receive a wish. Once we receive the referral, we'll contact the child's health or social care professional to confirm whether or not they're eligible for a wish.

Portrait of Dewi behind steering wheel smiling

Dewi wished to have a Nuremberg racing experience

What happens next?

If the child is eligible for a wish, we'll call the family asking for further information about the child.

We'll then arrange for our Wish Visitors to meet with the child to explore wish ideas with them.

Please note, there are restrictions on some kinds of wishes. If your wish falls into a category with restrictions, we’ll explain these to you so you can understand why.

Read more about the wish journey