Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

One Wish. A Lifetime of Memories.

GuideStar Charity Check

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

EIN: 35-1610742


The mission of Indiana Wish is to grant wishes to children ages 3 - 18 diagnosed with life-threatening conditions.

Ruling year info


Executive Director

J'Lynn Mayes

Main address



Show more contact info



Subject area info

Patient social services

Muscular dystrophy

Heart and circulatory system diseases


Gift distribution

Population served info

Ethnic and racial groups

People with physical disabilities

People with other disabilities

Terminally ill people

NTEE code info

Patient Services - Entertainment, Recreation (E86)

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Making Dreams Come True for Hoosier Children

Indiana Wish is an Indiana nonprofit formerly known as Indiana Children's Wish Fund. We help Indiana children diagnosed with devastating illnesses create a lifetime of memories when that life is uncertain. For almost four decades, Indiana Wish has supported the dreams of Hoosier children, blanketing the entire state of Indiana with hope.

Since 1984, Indiana Wish has built a solid reputation as a valuable resource for children and their families facing some of the most challenging days of their lives. We have granted over 3,500 wishes to children in 88 of Indiana's 92 counties. The children we serve are aged 3-18 and have been diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses. Indiana Wish provides hope and a brief respite from that illness, allowing wish kids and their families to create memories long after the wish takes place.

At Indiana Wish, we create hope and happiness amid hardship - powerful forces in the health and healing of these children.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

Association of Wish Granting Organizations 2023

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total number of volunteers supporting Indiana Wish.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Making Dreams Come True for Hoosier Children

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Context Notes

The number of volunteers significantly reduced in 2020 due to COVID-19. Indiana Wish includes our Board of Directors in total yearly numbers.

Total number of wishes granted yearly by Indiana Wish.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Making Dreams Come True for Hoosier Children

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Context Notes

The number reflects the total wishes granted yearly. COVID-19 affected all wish operations in 2020/2021 including limited travel, mask mandates, reduced funding sources, and office furloughs.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Indiana Wish continues to be the wish-granting organization for children facing life-threatening diagnoses solely in Indiana. We look for direction from our Board of Directors, Executive Director, and a team of three passionate women in the areas of Development, Wish Planning, and Marketing and Communications. Indiana Wish has developed two signature events, Bourbon, Bling and Bowties and Christmas in the Kitchen, but also is grateful for the inclusion in Republic Airways Plane Pull and Chukkers for Children.

Additionally, Indiana Wish relies on yearly third-party fundraising events, individual donors, and corporate partners to cover wish expenses and general operating costs. In 2023, Indiana Wish added two recognition societies: the Maribelle Society, for those who have generously agreed to leave Indiana Wish in their estate plans, and, the Phoenix Society, partners who sponsor a wish every year to a deserving Hoosier child.

Over the last two years, Indiana Wish has rebranded the organization (formerly Indiana Children's Wish Fund), developed a new website, and social media strategy, new collateral material, and implemented a more robust donor CRM.

Indiana Wish plans to schedule a new strategic plan retreat with our board of directors in 2024 to guide the nonprofit over the next five years.

Plan and implement a five-year strategic plan to guide the organization through 2029.

Indiana Wish is working to secure funding at present for this project. The goal is to secure funding by Q3 of 2024.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We share the feedback we received with the people we serve, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome


Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 7.55 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 5.9 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 25% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$21,639 -$150,863 -$72,228 $102,786 -$105,595
As % of expenses -2.6% -19.0% -13.6% 14.7% -10.8%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$22,573 -$151,725 -$73,037 $102,786 -$105,595
As % of expenses -2.8% -19.1% -13.7% 14.7% -10.8%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $797,484 $641,628 $390,091 $800,915 $1,049,938
Total revenue, % change over prior year -5.9% -19.5% -39.2% 105.3% 31.1%
Program services revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.0% 0.7% 19.7% 16.1% 0.7%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 12.5% 6.7% 1.5%
All other grants and contributions 100.0% 99.3% 67.9% 77.2% 96.2%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.6%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $819,123 $792,491 $532,759 $698,129 $977,185
Total expenses, % change over prior year -19.6% -3.3% -32.8% 31.0% 40.0%
Personnel 20.5% 22.3% 55.9% 38.7% 32.6%
Professional fees 3.8% 4.2% 3.7% 9.3% 4.6%
Occupancy 6.3% 6.5% 10.2% 7.6% 2.4%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 52.7% 46.9% 15.7% 35.6% 49.3%
All other expenses 16.7% 20.1% 14.5% 8.8% 11.2%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $820,057 $793,353 $533,568 $698,129 $977,185
One month of savings $68,260 $66,041 $44,397 $58,177 $81,432
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $18,326 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $1,651 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $889,968 $859,394 $596,291 $756,306 $1,058,617

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 7.7 7.0 6.6 4.8 3.3
Months of cash and investments 12.9 12.5 16.4 14.5 9.7
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 13.6 11.8 15.9 13.9 8.6
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $524,091 $461,345 $292,590 $280,429 $269,708
Investments $356,388 $363,988 $436,895 $565,184 $519,431
Receivables $100,000 $84,000 $0 $400 $55,302
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $51,125 $51,125 $51,125 $51,125 $51,125
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 96.7% 98.4% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 6.8% 16.2% 7.6% 7.5% 21.9%
Unrestricted net assets $928,753 $777,028 $703,991 $806,777 $701,182
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total net assets $928,753 $777,028 $703,991 $806,777 $701,182

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Letter of Determination is not available for this organization
Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

Executive Director

J'Lynn Mayes

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Indiana Childrens Wish Fund Inc

Board of directors
as of 02/13/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Tim Schlichte

Lake City Bank

Term: 2023 - 2025

Steve Bainaka

Retired Executive and Community Volunteer

Phil Gumpert

Tom Lange, Chairman

Sandeep Batra, MD

Riley Hospital for Children at IU

David DeHaven

One View, Founder and CEO

Stephanie Flittner

Shiel Sexton Company, Inc. / Risk Manager & Assistant General Counsel

Cebronica Luft

The Pavilion at Pan Am, Founder/Partner and Outschool, Supply Operations Manager

Greg Papagiannis

Flobal Account Executive at Oracle

Susan Tsangaris

Retired Social Worker & Community Volunteer

Matt Wooten

Capital Group / Regional Wealth Management Consultant

Brad Reay


Meg Zakrewski, MBA, MSN, APRN, CPNP-PC

Peyton Manning Hospital for Children

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/12/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/04/2024

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.