Wish Granting

Several of our Hearts of Hope families have had the privilege of having their heart child’s wish granted by The Rainbow Connection (http://www.rainbowconnection.org/), which fulfills the special wishes of Michigan children, 2 ½ to 18 years of age, with life-threatening medical conditions.


On May 9, 1980, Ron Dobson and his two chil-dren, Tim and Jennifer were killed in a tragic plane crash. In August of 1980 a memorial golf outing raised funds in the children’s names.

From this humble beginning evolved what is to-day The Rainbow Connection, a Michigan based 501 (c) 3 charity dedicated to granting wishes to children who are literally fighting for their lives.

From that very first wish, when John Bowden shadowboxed with Mohammed Ali from his bed at Children’s Hospital back in 1985, the staff and Board of Directors at The Rainbow Connection have dedicated their efforts to making dreams come true for Michigan children diagnosed with life threatening illnesses. From something as simple as a computer, a bedroom makeover or as unique as meeting the President of the United States at The White House or a glorious trip to Disney World, with individual and corporate support we have fulfilled over 1700 wishes since 1985 including over 120 wishes in 2007.


The child must be between the ages of 2 1/2 and 18 years and live in Michigan. The medical condition of each child must be confirmed in writing by the child’s primary care physician. A wish must be affordable, achievable and attainable. The child cannot have received a previous wish.


The Rainbow Connection is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. Executive Director Mary Grace McCarter works with the dedicated professional staff and many volunteers to make dreams come true and provide support to the entire family during this most difficult time.


Wishes bring joy and laughter to our wish kids and their families as they bravely face their health challenges. Wishes often fall into one of three categories: trip wishes, meeting celebrities, or receiving cherished gift items. The most popular wish granted is a magical trip to Walt Disney World! The wish child and immediate family are included in the wish experience. The average cost of a wish is $4500.

Additional Services

The Rainbow Connection offers support services including a link to needed services, assistance with expenses, and a listening ear. Our Enhancement Program provides fun times for wish families through summer picnics, holiday parties and tickets to area theatres, concerts and sporting events. We also offer two $1,000 college scholarships each year for wish children.

Wish Requests

Our trained staff meet each and every wish child. This visit may occur at the hospital, the child’s home or at our office, whatever is most convenient for the family. All wish requests are considered without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, financial status, or religious preference. The wish must be that of the child and not a well-meaning second party.


The Rainbow Connection is a non-profit 501( c ) 3 organization and all donations are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.

More than 80% of our expenses directly support wish services. The Raibow Connection does not solicit by telephone or door-to-door ever. Please send contributions to The Rainbow Connection at 621 West University, Rochester MI 48307 or donate online www.rainbowwishconnection.org.