Since 1985, Make-A-Wish® Illinois has touched thousands of lives, granting magical wishes to more than 11,000 children battling life-threatening medical conditions. Make-A-Wish Illinois continues to bring hope, strength and joy to special children across the state.
Average Cash Cost
*based on preliminary and unaudited financials
Click the links below to access our most recent annual reports and IRS Form 990.
- Fiscal Year 2012 Annual Report
- Fiscal Year 2011 Annual Report
- Fiscal Year 2010 Annual Report
- IRS Form 990 - FY11
- IRS Form 990 - FY10
How does Make-A-Wish generate revenue and support?
Make-A-Wish Illinois is supported through donations from individuals, corporations and foundations. The chapter receives no government funding. With a commitment to maintaining a diverse funding base, Make-A-Wish Illinois can continue to fulfill the mission of granting wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions in Illinois.
How has the revenue grown for Make-A-Wish Illinois over the last few years?
Cash and in-kind revenue has increased an average of 5% annually over the last five years. This growth has been made possible through concerted efforts to increase efficiency and to diversify fundraising sources.
What percentage of Make-A-Wish Illinois expenses are spent on program service related expense?
The Foundation spends 81% of total expenditures on program related expenses and strives to reach or exceed that goal each and every year. During the years the chapter ran an endowment campaign, the chapter spent just under 80% on program services. Investment income from that endowment is to be used to grant wishes in perpetuity. The campaign was an investment Make-A-WIsh IIllinois made to ensure the organization's ability to grant wishes in the future no matter the external economical climate.
Why are certain figures and ratios shown on the IRS Form 990 or by various charity watchdog sites different than what is reported in your annual report?
Financial information presented in our annual report is based on financial statements that have been audited by a third-party accounting firm. Due to differences in financial reporting versus tax reporting rules, figures may differ between the annual report and Form 990.
The IRS does not recognize revenue and expense from in-kind services and use of facilities. As such, this information is not reported in the 990, but is included in our annual report. Make-A-Wish Illinois receives a significant amount of in-kind support for wish granting purposes including airline miles, hotel accommodations, and ground transportation services. Such donations of services help us to lower our average cash expense per wish, allowing the the chapter to grant more wishes to children. For this reason, our program expense ratio is typically lower on the 990 than in our audited financials. Inclusion of these items presents the most accurate picture of Make-A-Wish Illinois performance, as these gifts are considered a critical element of our operating effectiveness.
How do charity watchdog organizations rate charities?
Each group uses different criteria, but generally they rely on information gleaned from public records such as the 990. Information is used and analyzed according to the criteria set by each different organization doing the rating. We have no control over charity watchdog sites and the frequency in which they obtain and utilize the information that is available.
For the criteria of a specific charity rating service, you should contact that service directlly.
Why is the 990 posted on your website and available through other websites from a couple of years ago?
The information we post on our website is the most current available. Our fiscal year ends in August, and tax forms reflect the year that a fiscal year begins. As such, it may appear that our information is older than it appears. For example, a "2006" tax form reflects our fiscal year 2007 (09/01/06 to 08/31/07). The most recent information is always posted on http://www.wishes.org/.
If you have any questions about the information you find here, we encourage you to call us at 312.602.9474 (800.978.9474, toll-free outside of metropolitan Chicago).
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