Making Wishes Come True

May 30, 2014 Updated May 30, 2014 at 9:24 AM EDT

By Elizabeth Carey

May 30, 2014 Updated May 30, 2014 at 9:24 AM EDT

There are plenty of people in corporate America who volunteer their time, but some stand out more than others...

Meet Jennifer Beckage, a busy attorney who handles complex business disputes and commercial litigation at the law firm Phillips Lytle.

She's also a mom who cares for her own family at home, but she also finds time to make wishes come true for children diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions.

Beckage is a wish granter with Make-A-Wish Western New York, which grants over 150 wishes a year to ill children.

Beckage organizes trips for the children or takes them on shopping sprees. One wish she really enjoys is a room makeover where she even helps with painting and more. And she's rewarded when they walk in and see the finished project.

"And then we bring the wish child in and reveal the room and that's always the most touching moment, that reveal of the wish," she said. "And that's when I see, I call it the Make-A-Wish smile, the child just gives you that look. For that moment, they don't have to think about what tomorrow will be like or what the next treatment is going to be like. They can just truly just enjoy life."

That dedication goes a long way with area families, according to Lisa Johnson who coordinates volunteers for Make-A-Wish. "We hear stories all the time about how thankful they are to meet our volunteers and for our volunteers giving them the voice of what they want, in terms of their wish and making that a reality for them," Johnson said.

Beckage began volunteering with the organization ten years ago, after seeing how it impacted a friend's family. Turning such wishes into reality is not easy. It requires endless phone calls, organization and hands on work. Beckage even spent a portion of her recent maternity leave remodeling a child's bedroom for Make-A-Wish.

You can read more about her efforts and learn how to contact Make-A-Wish to volunteer in the Business First edition on June 6.

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