Make-A-Wish® New Mexico
7400 Tiburon St. NE, Suite A1 Albuquerque, NM 87109
MEDIA CONTACT: Sara Lister via or 505-463-1369 PRESS RELEASE

Make-A-Wish Grants Sam’s Wish to Give Back to Healthcare Workers on April 29
Sam’s Wish Kits for healthcare workers fighting on the frontlines of COVID-19 will be delivered on Wednesday, April 29, recognized annually as World Wish Day
Albuquerque, NM (April 28, 2020) – Over the past two weeks, the community has stepped up to help Make-A-Wish New Mexico grant Sam’s wish to donate at least 100 wish kits to healthcare workers fighting on the frontlines of the COVID-19 outbreak. Sam’s goal was to create 100 kits that would provide much needed items for re-entry into their homes after a shift, personal hygiene items that are hard to find, and gift cards for food to local restaurants and grocery stores. Through the generosity of our community Sam will be able to donate 120 kits to healthcare workers and additionally, he will be donating 100 mini kits that will include some of the items off his wish list, as well as gift cards.
Sam’s wish kits will be distributed to frontline healthcare workers at Presbyterian Hospital, Lovelace Medical Center and UNMH on Wednesday, April 29, 2020, a day recognized annually as World Wish Day. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the wish that inspired the founding of Make-A-Wish in 1980, paving the way for Make-A-Wish New Mexico to be founded in 1986. The sole focus of Make-A-Wish is to grant life-changing wishes to children battling critical illnesses and to provide strength, hope and joy at a time when it is needed most. Sam’s selfless act to use his wish to give back has provided hope to the entire community as everyone comes together to support healthcare heroes.
“I would like to say ‘thank you’ to everyone who has donated to the wish kits,” said wish kid, Sam Neale. “I could never have imagined how many people would help out to make this wish possible. I am so glad that we were able to exceed the goal of 100 kits and I hope these items will bring as much joy to the healthcare workers as this wish, and the community’s support, has brought to me.”

Sam’s wish was made possible through the generosity of the Jennifer Riordan Foundation, Clay and Shawna Holderman and the community of Albuquerque.
“We are so happy to be able to grant Sam’s wish and we are in awe of his compassion for our healthcare workers. Sam’s desire to pay-it-forward has inspired an entire community,” said Sara Lister, President and CEO of Make-A-Wish New Mexico. “Not only did businesses and individuals step up to donate items like antibacterial hand soap and bleach, they also donated over $16,000 in gift cards to local restaurants and grocery stores. During such an uncertain time, Sam has brought hope to our entire state.”
Make-A-Wish will kick-off a 12-month campaign in honor of the 40th anniversary on World Wish Day. It is fitting that Sam’s wish will be granted on World Wish Day, which honors all of the people and sponsors who unite to give their time, talent and resources to make wishes possible. Sam’s wish is an excellent example of the power a wish has to engage and inspire the wish kids, their families and their entire communities.
Details for delivery of Sam’s Wish Kits are listed below.
Wednesday, April 29, 2020 11:00 a.m. Presbyterian Rust Medical Center, 2400 Unser Blvd. SE, Rio Rancho, NM 87124 North Parking Lot
A caravan including a U-Haul carrying Sam’s Wish Kits will arrive, along with separate vehicles for Sam and his family, representatives of the Jennifer Riordan Foundation, members of the Make-A-Wish New Mexico staff, Albuquerque Fire & Rescue, and Albuquerque Police Department.
Social distancing measures will be adhered to during the caravan.
Following the drop-off at Rust Medical Center, the caravan will head to Lovelace Medical Center, downtown Albuquerque, and then to UNMH. Members of the media are welcome to follow the caravan to all three stops. Interviews will be available at the first stop at Rust Presbyterian Medical Center.
To learn more about Sam’s wish or how you can support other life-changing wishes, please visit
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About Make-A-Wish Make-A-Wish creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We seek to bring every eligible child’s wish to life because every child deserves a childhood. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight their illness. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the wish that inspired the founding of the organization in 1980. Since then, Make-A-Wish has become the world’s leading children’s wish-granting organization, serving children in every community in the United States and in nearly 50 countries worldwide. Together, generous donors, supporters, staff and more than 34,000 volunteers across the U.S. unite to deliver hope to wish kids and their families when they need it most. In total, Make-A-Wish has granted more than 330,000 wishes to children in the U.S. and its territories; more than 15,800 wishes in 2019 alone. Make-A-Wish New Mexico grants over one hundred life-changing wishes per year for children battling critical illnesses across the state.