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Thousands take part in Walk For Wishes at Town Square

Thousands participate Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Walk For Wishes for Make-A-Wish Southern Nevada at Town Square in Las Vegas. (Chloe Beardsley/KSNV)

From a princess, to a unicorn and hundreds of smiling little faces, Town Square Las Vegas appeared to be truly a magical place Saturday at the annual Walk For Wishes.

Hundreds of local children are able to take time away from their worries every year because of the work of Make-A-Wish of Southern Nevada. The foundation's work wouldn't be possible without help from donors. Hundreds of thousands of dollars were raised to grant the future wishes of “wish kids” at this year’s event.

In the crowd of more than 3,000 people sat Danielle Hague quietly in her booth. The 14-year-old has trouble speaking but she has a voice in her older sister, Rachel.

"it means a lot to me to see everybody here to support one another and just make a difference,” said Rachel.

Rachel says that for a short time in 2011, her sister's medical concerns took the back burner with a family trip Disney World, Universal Studios and the zoo. The trip Danielle wished to take was granted by Make-A-Wish.

"it just put a huge smile on her face – especially back in 2011. We were going through a lot of struggles with her medical issues and everything. but she got to forget about all of that when we went on her trip."

Rachel says even after years of hospital visits and research, her younger sister’s medical issues are still a mystery to doctors. She continues to fight for her health, even without a diagnosis.

"She takes growth hormones, she has kidney issues – she's actually on the kidney dialysis list right now. but they don't know necessarily what she has,” said Rachel.

Katie Frey, a wish manager for Make-A-Wish of Southern Nevada, says she's probably helped grant the wishes of over two hundred little ones so far.

"Most of them when they get their wish granted are going through something that adults can't even imagine going through. they're so strong and so impactful to me,” said Frey. “It gives the kids hope. It gives them something to look forward to and even after they have their wish granted they can think about it for years to come."

Before Saturday’s walk even came to an end nearly $500,000 had had already been raised. The funds that will ensure the future wishes of kids – like Danielle – will one day come true.

“I see so many kids that get their dream and when it comes to kids that have a lot of medical issues, sometimes they think that they're not good enough, but make a wish definitely shows them how they can exceed and be the best they can be,” said Rachel.

If you would like to help make a little one's dreams come true, Make-A-Wish of Southern Nevada is still taking donations for Saturday morning's walk. They'll keep collecting funds for the event through the end of March. To donate. click here.

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