Every day, people in our communities face challenges that go unseen. Inspired by our #PeopleFirst philosophy, the Wishing Well program strives to better the places we live by giving to those most in need. We are so grateful to be able to grant such impactful wishes across many of our communities. Check out some of our recent wishes below!
A Surprise for Baby Kai
Kai Savageau was born on June 29, 2022, with a condition called arthrogryposis. Arthrogryposis is characterized by multiple joint contractures (stiffness) and involves muscle weakness found throughout the body at birth. For Kai, this condition impacts all four of his limbs and neck, resulting in no ability to lift his arms or straighten his legs. This also impacts the mobility of his feet and hands. Both of his club feet are bent entirely upside down and his wrists are bent forward. There is no cure for arthrogryposis, but treatment options are available to alleviate its symptoms.
“Right now he visits multiple specialists each week and they are casting his legs in hopes to straighten them a little bit prior to performing the first of many surgeries,” said Kiana Majidian, who is a friend of Kai’s parents Nik and Kayla. “Since he cannot form muscles the way most babies can, there are a lot of unknowns about his future ability to use his arms and legs.”
Kai has a long road of therapy and surgeries ahead of him, so Kiana submitted a wish to the Wishing Well to provide some financial support. We are more than happy to help this young family through this challenging journey. Our Fargo team presented the family with $1,000 for gas and grocery expenses so they can focus on Kai.
Nik and Kayla said that Kai has been recovering and responding well to his weekly castings. They have found great strength through their support system and that has helped them remain positive.
Keeping the Tank Full
Grafton community member Melissa Burley sent in a wish to the Wishing Well after her aunt Lisa underwent two intense surgical procedures. Lisa Ferguson recently had surgery to remove an aortic aneurysm and had a valve replacement done at the same time. She had to take time off from work to recover, and her husband Craig is working very limited hours as he has stage 4 prostate cancer. We understand that the world doesn’t stop when you need a rest and wanted to help Melissa provide some peace of mind for Lisa and Craig. As Lisa and Craig have been traveling a lot for doctor appointments, we thought it would be a great idea to help fund their fuel expenses!
Remembering an Incredible Mother
The Garcia family was struck with tragedy when Lucia Garcia was killed in a shooting and her infant son, DK, was seriously injured. Choice Bank’s Jane Karczeuski wanted to do something to show support for the family.
“Lucia was my daughter’s teacher at Juniors – the daycare she goes to,” Jane said. “DK (Lucia’s son) and my daughter spend quite a bit of time together, so this hits pretty close to home.”
DK has since recovered and is thriving with family in Perham, Minnesota. Jane put together a care package for DK and the Garcia family with funds from the Wishing Well, which included diapers, wipes, clothes, and baby food, and delivered it to the family.
“It’s changed our world. It’s like living in a different reality,” said Jessica, Lucia’s sister. “We have to learn to live with it. It’s very painful and it’s one day at a time. DK is a great source of motivation for all of us. You see him, it’s like you’re looking at a living miracle. We’re very grateful to have him and have a part of her with us.”
While Jessica and her family still mourn the loss of Lucia, the community will remember how she protected her son with her life.
“She was genuinely a good person. She had a good heart,” Jessica said. “Her son was her life. We just hope that people remember her for the hero that she was.”
If you or a loved one is a victim of domestic violence, there are resources available to help you. In an emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number or law enforcement agency. The National Domestic Violence Hotline offers free confidential service 24/7 at 800-799-SAFE (800-799-7233; toll-free). Call the hotline for crisis intervention and referrals to resources, such as women’s shelters. The Hotline also has an online directory to help you find resources in your area.
Back to School
Our teachers are invaluable resources to our communities, as their positive spirit encourages and supports our youth to accomplish their goals. We want to make sure our local educators have the resources they need to continue to do this.
Lori Longtin, a kindergarten teacher at North Border Elementary School in Walhalla, ND, sent us a wish for a Reading Writing Center for her classroom. “This mobile learning center allows students to be more creative while using various classroom materials,” Lori said. “Students can build self-confidence as they put their own ideas into action and make decisions as they use the materials.”
We made sure Lori got the funds to purchase this educational tool and can’t wait to see how her students will benefit from it!
The Choice Bank Wishing Well is accepting wishes! Ready to cast yours? Visit choicewishingwell.com and let us know who you would like to help out in your community.Make A Wish