Tragedy turns to a positive light after Dennis McGinnis lost his nephew, Jason Douglas Creager, to cancer in 1992. McGinnis made it his mission to start a non-profit and be a part of the lives of kids who are going through some rough times. McGinnis called his non-profit, Jason's Dreams for Kids (JDFK).
Jason's Dreams for Kids grants wishes for kids in the New Jersey area. In order to receive a wish, the child must be diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition, i.e. a progressive, degenerative or malignant condition that has placed the child's life in jeopardy. The condition does not have to be terminal in order to participate, unlike some similar wish-granting agencies. JDFK works with the child's physician to determine eligibility and then they work with the family to determine what kind of wish they can grant. Wishes are funded by generous donations from individual contributions, corporate donations, and sponsors throughout the year. their goal is to grant wishes for every child they can in order to put a smile on their faces.
Some of the wishes granted are week-long trips to Disney World. Another child got to take a trip to New York City to see the Rockettes and ride a Ferris Wheel inside Toys-R-Us. One special guy got to be a guest at a WWE match and meet his favorite wrestler, Shawn Michaels. Wishes don't have to be trips, they can be something the kid needs, like an adaptive bike or an exciting room makeover.
But that's not all - - JDFK really goes above and beyond all year. Some kids are invited to special events throughout the year. Recently, children got to sit at a private suite to watch the BlueClaws baseball game. The community gets involved by attending fundraisers, such as golf tournaments, carnivals and charity dinners.
The coolest event is the annual Christmas Boat Cruise aboard the Seastreak. All of the recipients from the past and their families are invited to take a three hour cruise up to the NYC skyline and around the Statue of Liberty. All of the kids receive a big bag of toys from Santa a.k.a. Dennis McGinnis. It is a heartwarming experience to all those involved.
Dennis McGinnis and all the volunteers are known to make relationships with the families and even make visits at hospitals to comfort loved ones and even offer financial assistance. The charity is always accepting volunteers and donations. It is heartwarming to know all the joy Jason has given to so many families and encouraging to have the joy continue.