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My Heart Just Sunk…

When I read this email, I could not believe it. My heart literally sunk into my stomach. If you follow my channel (or even if you don’t) you are well familiar with our passion and commitment to Give Kids The World Village. The following letter from Pamela Landwirth, CEO and President of Give Kids The World Village is heartbreaking. The fact that children and their families may never have the opportunity to experience the joy and freedom that the Village offers is inconceivable. To the staff and volunteers, who I am so proud to call my friends, and to Pam who is the most amazing person I have ever met, “the beast” behind the magic of the Village my heart is with you. I feel that Pam said it best in her letter, so let me share it with you.

Dear Volunteer Friends,
It is with a sad and heavy heart that I must share some devastating news both for me personally and for our entire Village family.
Unforeseen circumstances directly related to COVID-19 have resulted in Give Kids The World having to remain closed. The Make-A-Wish Foundation, our majority wish-granting partner which accounts for 84% of our wish families, has notified us that due to COVID-19, it will not be scheduling any wishes that involve travel or large groups until a vaccine is in wide use.  In addition, although the theme parks are reopening, we are uncertain as to when they will be able to welcome vulnerable guests, including our wish children.
As a result, the Village will remain closed for an undetermined period of time. Unfortunately, this means we must lay off the majority of our staff effective Saturday, June 27, 2020. We will also be pausing all volunteer shifts until further notice.
A small team will remain to ensure the safety and security of the Village and to nurture our relationships with you, our volunteers, wish granting organizations, wish families, donors and other partners – as well as to prepare for our eventual reopening.
We will continue to honor our commitment to never turn a wish child away. If there is a rush wish prior to our reopening, we will work with our wish granting partners to fulfill that wish.
I promise you that I will work tirelessly to find a way to bring back families as soon as possible.
I am truly grateful for your passion and support for the Village and our wish families. Please know that I am holding you close to my heart during this closure.  If you have any questions you may contact Volunteer Services at volunteer@gktw.org.  As always, I am also available for you at any time.
Take care and stay well.
With all my love and gratitude,
Pamela Landwirth
President & CEO