Stefan’s Wish Trip to the World Cup Soccer Games – Brazil, Summer of 2014
A foundational building block to The Stefan Pierson Foundation and a guiding principle in our Mission Statement was born from a desire of family, friends, classmates, teachers, coaches, teammates, and community to grant Stefan a wish trip after cancer had limited his athletic ability to participate in competitive sports. Much to our surprise, Stefan’s osteo-sarcoma diagnosis at age 19 disqualified him from access to the local chapter of Make-a-Wish Foundation(tm) and he was not eligible to apply for a wish trip from that fantastic organization.
One of his high school classmates, Alex Saunders, knew that Stefan frequently talked about someday attending a World Cup Soccer game. She thought up the idea to use the Internet as a means of fund-raising a trip of a lifetime for Stefan, and created “Stefan’s Wish” with the goal to send him and a friend to the 2014 World Cup Games in Brazil.
Set up through the “You Caring(tm)” website for on-line fund-raising, and supported by many donors from Stefan’s family, friends, club soccer community, ski team, hometown community, schoolmates, and other gracious sources, successfully raised over $12,000 for the trip. The US Men’s Soccer Association donated tickets at each game’s venue for Stefan and his friend, Will, to attend the US Men’s Team World Cup games across Brazil. An added highlight, Stefan and Will were able to meet with all the players and their coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, at their training facility in Sao Paulo after the tournament.
It is from this end-to-end experience with “Stefan’s Wish” of creative fund-raising, hearing Stefan recount the trip’s stories, seeing his pictures, and observing Stefan’s infectious smile throughout it all, tells us that our Foundation’s mission is important to carry forward to help others, in the selfless, humble way Stefan would have done.
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