These volunteers strive to make youngsters' wishes come true
Both love children, which is why Miss Amanda Cho, 35, and Mr Darius Low, 36, have been striving to make the wishes of youngsters with critical illnesses come true through Make-A-Wish Singapore (Mawsg).
The dating couple, who are also co-workers at international school EtonHouse, have helped make seven wishes come true in the span of their four-year journey as volunteers with Mawsg.
Since its inception in 2002, Mawsg has granted a total of 1,560 wishes. The non-profit organisation will be celebrating World Wish Day today to celebrate the transformative power of wishes.
One beneficiary of Miss Cho and Mr Low's efforts is Miss Nicole Lim, whose wish was to publish a book about invisible illnesses.
Miss Lim, 20, has been suffering from a few illnesses such as autoimmune hepatitis, primary sclerosing cholangitis and ulcerative colitis, where her immune system attacks her liver, bile ducts and colon respectively.
She became the couple's wish child in 2018.
Part of the process for them was learning the ropes of publishing from scratch and overseeing the project when Miss Lim had to undergo a liver transplant.
After overcoming a few hurdles, Miss Lim's book, How To Be A Good Patient, was published on her 18th birthday.
Today, Miss Lim has sold more than 700 copies of her book and has also given talks to more than 1,000 children and medical staff.
Said Mr Low of the joy of volunteering: "In everything that you want to do well, there are challenges, but if you feel passionate about something, you will work it out."
Fellow wish-granter Ms Sherry Soon, 39, echoes that sentiment. Battling an autoimmune disease herself, Ms Soon has helped to make 12 wishes come true since 2013 and is currently working on pulling off two more for two more children.
Ms Soon told TNP she is constantly inspired by the children, and it gives her strength to battle her own illness.
She is also the founder of the Autoimmune Illness Support Group and Be Kind SG.
"After I was diagnosed with autoimmune illness 20 years ago, I felt that it was even more important to volunteer," said Ms Soon, who has vasculitis - a condition that causes blood vessels to become inflamed, temporarily affecting the nerves.
"You can still contribute in your own way even if you are diagnosed with an illness."