Make-A-Wish Kid Granted Dream Disney Cruise

JONESBORO/BLYTHEVILLE,  AR (KAIT) - A young woman diagnosed with sickle-cell disease has been granted the wish of her dreams, a Disney cruise with Mickey and Minnie Mouse. The Make-A-Wish Foundation Mid-South Chapter and Arkansas District II Future Business Leaders of America helped grant the wish of Khadijah Jenkins, 15, of Blytheville.

"I'm happy. I finally get to do something for my 16th birthday," said Khadijah.

Khadijah attended Saturday's Arkansas State University men's basketball game with tickets from Make-A-Wish. She loves basketball, but it was the furthest thing from her mind at halftime.

At halftime, Khadijah was presented with a special plaque by Make-A-Wish. The plaque invites her on a Disney Cruise on March 22nd.

Khadijah will meet all Disney characters on the cruise. She's been given a digital camera, scrapbook and other items to create an ever-lasting memory.

"Excited. Glad that it finally happened and came true," said Carolyn Jenkins, Khadijah's mother.

Carolyn said it's hard to take care of her daughter and keep a strong mindset at the same time, but she said she's overjoyed with the wish her daughter has been granted.

"It's a good feeling because to see them when they're sick and down, and can't do anything, or much of anything, and then to see finally happy and able to do something that they wanted to do, and it'll finally happen," said Carolyn. "I think nobody knows what it's like to have a sickness or disease until it's really you and it's in your house."

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants wishes to children with life-threatening diseases and other medical conditions. It has granted more than 3,100 wishes. It will grant 275 wishes this year.

"There are children that have been going through these life-threatening illnesses. They're going to doctors appointments. They have treatments. They need something to look forward to and that's what the Make-A-Wish Foundation does," said Misty Carr, volunteer with Make-A-Wish.

When asked why the Make-A-Wish program is so important for those involved, Carr said acts of kindness enrich the human race.  "It's just the most amazing feeling in the world. I do this because I have a healthy child, and I want to do something for these families where they're not so fortunate," said Carr.

"It's hard to keep a secret from someone you see and talk to everyday about what's going on, and I would be on the phone with Misty and Khadijah say, can I talk to her, and we'll say, okay, got to go, bye," said Carolyn.