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Frequently Asked Questions

General

Why do you require a criminal background check?

Because we work closely with children, Make-A-Wish Greater Los Angeles asks all volunteers to pay for and complete a criminal background check. More information and a link will be sent to volunteers after they apply. All information received from these reports will remain confidential and be used only for screening and placement purposes. Make-A-Wish policy prohibits our chapter from using the services of a volunteer if the volunteer has been convicted of a crime that victimizes children, is sexual in nature and/or involves violence, fraud or significant theft.

Volunteering

What are some of your greatest volunteer needs? 
Currently, we have a special need for volunteers who meet any of the following criteria:

  • Are bilingual in both English and Spanish
  • Live in Lancaster/Palmdale, Central Los Angeles, and the Gateway Cities

How do I become a volunteer?
To begin the volunteer process, you must attend a Volunteer Orientation, complete a volunteer application, and complete a volunteer interview and/or a criminal background check. Please visit Becoming a Volunteer for more details.

Can I volunteer around my schedule? 
Yes. Many volunteers are working professionals with personal and professional commitments. We ask for a time commitment in order to ensure volunteers are properly trained and can make timely progress in granting children’s wishes. Wish Granters schedule a time to meet with our wish families based on the family’s schedule as well as their own. Office volunteers may work during business hours, while special event volunteers can select specific days and times based on event needs. We strive to be as flexible as possible with our volunteers’ time, and we ask the same in return.

What can I do as a volunteer?
Our volunteer roles include: Office, Translator/Interpreter, Special Events, and Wish Granter. Visit Types of Volunteers for more information.

Can anyone be a volunteer?
Volunteers must be at least 18 years of age. Volunteers must be positive, outgoing, and passionate about children and our mission. It is important that volunteers are comfortable in a variety of social situations and work well with others.

I'm not 18 years old. Can I still volunteer for Make-A-Wish?
Although all official volunteers must be 18 years old to work directly with our wish children, there are a number of other opportunities: hosting a toy, backpack or gift card drive or organizing a fundraiser at school through our Kids For Wish Kids program.

What kind of schedule must I have to be able to volunteer?
It is unlikely that you will have a regular volunteer time. The positions at Make-A-Wish tend to be very project-oriented, and it is necessary that you have a flexible enough schedule to accommodate this commitment. Granting wishes is a long-term volunteer role. Special event volunteers consist of a more short-term commitment.

Wish Granter

What is a Wish Granter?
Wish Granters work in teams of two and attend to details of granting a wish. They work directly with children to ascertain and plan wishes. They also work creatively to seek in-kind good and services to implement the wish. The nature of each child’s wish determines the level of a Wish Granter’s involvement. Wish Granters attend a mandatory training, work on at least two wishes per year, and act as liaisons between the wish families and our staff. Wish Granters must be at least 18 years old.

Do Wish Granters travel with the family/child?
No. There are 60 Make-A-Wish chapters around the country and many international affiliates. When we send a wish family to another state or country, that chapter will help facilitate the wish.

What is a Wish Granter Training?
Wish Granter Trainings are specialized trainings that consist of an overview of Make-A-Wish, the wish-granting process, meeting with children/families, and planning a wish. This is a mandatory in-depth training for anyone interested in directly working with wish families.  

How often and where do you hold Wish Granter Trainings?
Wish Granter Trainings are in-person trainings typically located at our chapter’s office. They are held on an as-needed basis as determined by the need in each community and area.

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Make-A-Wish® Greater Los Angeles
11390 W. Olympic Blvd.
Suite 300
Los Angeles, CA 90064
(310) 788-9474
Toll Free Los Angeles Only (800) 322-9474