Amazing Kids! Magazine

Amazing Kids! of the Month – February 2012 – Calista Pierce

Calista Pierce, Amazing Young Wish Granter
By Kasey Dallman, AKOM writer

 

Quote of the Month

“You are never too old or young, tall or small to make a difference.”

-Calista Pierce, 12 year old amazing wish granter.

Have you ever wished that fairy godmothers were real and all your wishes could get granted? Calista Pierce is living proof that fairy godmothers aren’t just something for the movies. Only 12 years old, Calista raises money for Special Olympics so the athletes can go to competitions and for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, so that seriously ill children get the wish they have always wanted! Calista has put in over 3,000 hours of volunteer time and has already raised over $12,000 for Special Olympics and has funded two wishes for children in need, each costing around $3,400.

Calista Pierce, 12 year old wish granter

If you have ever wanted to help out with Special Olympics or Make-A-Wish Foundation, or if you are looking for ways to make a difference in your community, Calista’s story is perfect for you! She has impacted so many lives we don’t even know where to begin!

Calista Pierce, Making Dreams Come True Since 2007

Two amazing organizations, Special Olympics and Make-A-Wish Foundation have never been foreign to Calista. She has known about both for years because her brother is a Special Olympics athlete and he is eligible to be granted a wish through Make-A-Wish Foundation. Calista’s knowledge of these organizations and yearning to make a difference helped her to start raising money.

Calista and her brother Austin

When she was only seven years old, Calista overheard the Special Olympics management team talking about how they weren’t raising enough money to take the athletes to the competitions. Since the organization was so important to her Calista, she knew she had to help. “I started making lots of crafts to sell to raise money to help.” Besides her fundraising efforts, Calista is also a Special Olympics volunteer and a Unified Partner. As a Unified Partner for Special Olympics, Calista gets to train and compete with the Special Olympic athletes as her teammates. “I get to play Unified bocce with my brother and swim with 2 other athletes and another Unified swimmer,” Calista explained.

Calista doesn’t just help out with Special Olympics! When she was nine years old, Calista found out that her brother qualified for a wish through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. She researched the foundation and “I decided I wanted to try to raise enough money to grant a wish.

Calista Cares

Calista Cares was formed because of Calista’s desire to help other people. “Calista Cares is a cause where I made and sell crafts to raise money for Special Olympics and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.”

In starting Calista Cares, Calista got a lot of help from her mom and dad, and is still supported by them today. “They are always helping me with booking craft sales and helping me make some crafts, homemade suckers and baked goods,” Calista added.

One craft that Calista’s mom taught her how to make is a ceramic leaf necklace. These are Calista’s favorite crafts to make. “I am really glad when people tell me that they like them,” she said.

Calista started Calista Cares to raise money for Special Olympics and the Make-A-Wish Foundation

In addition to crafts, Calista also does bake sales, lemonade stands, raffles, and various other fundraisers. “I was also the captain of my own Relay for Life team and had my own Cut-A-Thon for Locks of Love.

To Calista, helping others comes naturally to her. “I always feel really good knowing that I am making a difference in my community.” Calista also thinks that is important for other kids to make a difference. “I think it is important because you’re helping others and changing the world.”

Making Wishes Come True!

Through Calista Cares, Calista has been able to make wishes come true for children who are fighting a dangerous illness. “I think that the coolest part of being able to grant someone a wish is knowing that you just gave someone with life threatening medical conditions the one thing that they wanted or wanted to do,” said Calista.

Calista has been raising money for Make-A-Wish Foundation since she was nine years old!

She has already granted two wishes! “My first wish was for a little girl who is four years old. Her wish was to go to Disney World and she went in April. My second was for a boy who is 14 years old. His wish was to see Taylor Swift in concert and he went in June.”

Calista’s Bright Future!

Calista hopes to continue working with Special Olympics and Make-A-Wish Foundation to keep making a difference. “My future goals are to raise as much money for Special Olympics and Make-A-Wish as I can, grant as many wishes as I can, and try to get more people to want to make a difference.” In the immediate future she is trying to raise $15,000 for Special Olympics and is raising money to grant her third wish. Calista also would like to be a Special Olympic assistant coach and eventually a head coach!

We see Calista making a lot of positive differences in the world, and you can too! “You are never too old or young, or too tall or small to make a difference,” Calista said. “You can do anything, like helping a neighbor or donating money to a charity, as long as you are doing something you want to do to make a difference.”

Awards and Honors Calista has Received

  • 2010 Special Olympics Pennsylvania Volunteer of the Year Award (Calista was the youngest person to receive this award)
  • Discovery Girls Magazine Role Model
  • Gold and silver medals in Special Olympics Unified bocce and swimming
  • Gold Barnum Award

Follow Calista

Calista’s website: www.CalistaCares.com

Calista’s Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/CalistaCares

Calista’s Twitter Page: www.twitter.com/CalistaCares