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Significant Organization Assisting People

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Portfolio Project 2

Using the Internet, research a significant person or organization in history that assisted people or was an advocate against inequality. Whether through philanthropy, civil rights, teachings, lifestyle, etc., this person/organization has had a significant impact upon people. Answer the associated questions below.

This is to be the second entry in your portfolio, which showcases your ability to decode the concepts from this course and effectively apply them to the world around you. This project entry deals with sociology within a historical sense. For example, what would have happened if Clara Barton never started the Red Cross or if Florence Nightingale never pursued nursing? Those are just a couple examples of historical persons who affected society as a whole.


1. Describe the mission and purpose of the organization.
2. Who started the organization? Describe him or her (only if applicable).
3. What changes have occurred in society based upon the work of the organization?
4. What, if any, influence has the organization had?


1. Describe his or her lifestyle.
2. Discuss what led him or her to become an advocate for those in lower social standing.
3. What do you believe we can take away from this person and apply today?
4. Did his or her advocacy invoke a change? Have others followed in his or her footsteps?
5. What, if any, influence has the person had on others?

Solution Preview

1. Describe the mission and purpose of the organization.

One organization that I know that makes an enormous difference to children who do not have much more time to enjoy life is the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Their mission and purpose is to "...grant wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength, and joy" (Make A Wish Foundation). Started in 1980, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has grown into a world-wide organization that has granted the wish of over 250,000 children while maintaining the grassroots fulfillment of its mission. This organization has literally had life-changing impacts on the children and families who are receiving their services and has positively given back to society in the process.

2. Who started the organization? Describe him or her (only if applicable).

The organization was started as a group effort of people who came together under unusual circumstances. In 1980, there was a seven-year old child named Christopher James Greicious who had a big dream of becoming a police officer. However, because Christopher was suffering from late-stage leukemia, his dream was likely to not ever come true. Make-A-Wish began here with a US Customs officer named Tommy Austin who heard about Christopher but did not know him personally. After requesting to meet Christopher and his mother, Officer Austin promised Christopher a ride on a police helicopter. This promise quickly spread throughout the department, and all of the officers decided to make this experience one that Christopher would never forget.

On April 29th 1980, they started Christopher's day with a tour of the city in the helicopter which landed at police headquarters, where they were greeted with three cruisers and a motorcycle officer. Soon after, Christopher was sworn in as the ...

Solution Summary

This solution focuses on the Make-A-Wish-Foundation as the significant organization in assisting people. Background information are provided such as history, founder, changes in society, and influence.