“Message That ‘You Matter”: Las Vegas High Schoolers’ 1,000 Wishes Granted Through TikTok Plea

A teacher in Las Vegas asked for help on TikTok to fulfill over 1,000 wishes from high schoolers in need. Cheri Guy, a 51-year-old teacher, reached out to the online community, and the response was overwhelming. Donations poured in, making it possible to grant every wish from students at Desert Pines High School.

The Wishmas program, running for almost ten years at this Title 1 school where many students qualify for free meals, usually fulfilled about 300 wishes annually. This year, with Cheri Guy’s involvement and her TikTok account garnering over 165K followers, the number skyrocketed.

The wishes varied—from simple requests for a coffee chain gift card to more significant ones like slippers or textbooks. Many students asked for items for their families or things with personal meaning. The program particularly supports students facing challenges such as poverty or being in the foster system.

Cheri Guy emphasized the importance of the messages accompanying the gifts. Many donors included words of encouragement, reminding students that they matter and that their dreams are important.

Some donations went above and beyond, like the CEO of Dearfoams sending boxes of slippers after hearing about a student’s wish. Another heartwarming story involved a student aspiring to be an astrophysicist, who requested a $200 physics textbook. Two astrophysicists not only offered to buy the book but also volunteered to mentor the student.

Cheri Guy shared her own wish—that people recognize the positive impact of a community coming together for a larger cause. Amidst the generosity, she reflected on the harsh realities of the world, especially witnessing the aftermath of the University of Las Vegas shootings on December 6.

By the last day of school before winter break, nearly 1,000 students had their wishes granted. Some requests were for future events like yearbooks, graduation gear, and senior trips. Cheri Guy hopes this experience instills in the students the understanding that people care about them and want the best for their futures. Additionally, she wishes it inspires them to pay it forward and create positive change for others as they enter adulthood.

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