In 1986 Make-A-Wish was established to grant life-changing wishes to children with critical illnesses. After delivering thousands of amazing wishes to extraordinary youngsters, turning them into heroes, princes and princesses, and even taking some of them to far-away places or on magical adventures wishes, it was clear that these children needed a space other than their hospital rooms or homes. This space would take them outside of their illnesses into a child-centered, imaginative, and inspirational space custom-made for wishing.
The Wishing place was designed to unleash children's imaginations, and Make-A-Wish Connecticut turned to Synect to design and create a special place to facilitate and inspire children to discover their heartfelt wishes.
This space would be called the Wish Factory, and Synect would use all its digital magic to design a place that helped children discover and declare their wishes. Should this room be a fairy forest? Could it be a wishing well? Would it be a starry sky full of friendly stars? The room could be anything at all—the only rule was that it had to remain a secret so that each child and family could experience the awe and magic firsthand when visiting the Wishing Place to discover and declare their wish.
The wizards at Synect went to work creating several visions for what the Wish Factory could be and then traveled to the far-off land of Trumbull, Connecticut, to bring the new content and experience to life.
Power in Numbers
Make-A-Wish Connecticut and Synect teamed up to create a unique and captivating experience in the new Wish Factory space. Synect built custom props and used a combination of projection mapping and animation to bring the room and experience to life. The studio's experienced designers and content creators crafted a story to make the wish-granting experience guided, exciting and immersive.
When a wish kid walks into the room, it comes to life and creates a unique experience. A bright, bold combination of custom content and interactivity engages children and their families. This immersive smart space prompts children to consider and discover their wishes by showing them examples of five general wish types:
I wish to BE
I wish to MEET
I wish to GO
I wish to HAVE
I wish to GIVE
Integrated audio and interactivity deliver a sequenced experience to guide children through a process of searching their hearts and discovering their wishes.
The new digital experience at the Wish Factory launched in the fall of 2021. "We are thrilled with our collaboration with the Make-A-Wish Connecticut," Synect Creative Director Ryan Boyle said. "It was so gratifying to put our team's expertise in digital experience and content creation to use benefiting wish kids, their families, and the entire organization."
Staff and the press were delighted by the new space. Connecticut Post wrote: "For the employees, the day was about celebrating their wish come true — a new facility that will give children a much-needed chance to enjoy their childhoods." The article quotes Michelle Wilson, board chairwoman of the organization's Connecticut branch, who said, "It's beyond my wildest dreams of what the Wishing Place is going to be for our chapter… we're excited to hopefully bring it to other chapters in the U.S. as well."
Make-A-Wish Connecticut's new Wish Factory is a project very near and dear to Synect's heart. The team is proud of the work and the experience created. Please get in touch with us to request a special virtual presentation of the new Wish Factory experience because some things simply must be seen to be believed.
Helping children find their heart's wish
Engaging Wish Kids and families in wish making
Giving kids and families a magical experience