Since birth, 12-year-old Destiny has struggled to manage her rare genetic condition – epidermolysis bullosa (EBD). Missing her top layer of skin, Destiny must be bandaged practically from head to toe most days, much like a burn victim.
Living with EBD can prove quite difficult. The disease’s symptoms primarily target the skin, making it very fragile and susceptible to blistering. Minor injuries and common behaviors such as scratching can lead to severe scarring of the affected area, making simple tasks and actions much more precarious, difficult and painful. Because of this, caring for a child with EBD requires near constant attention.
Destiny, though, doesn’t let her condition keep her down. She absolutely loves animals, and when possible watches her favorite movies including The Lion King and Toy Story. She also finds happiness in spreading awareness of EBD through her personal YouTube channel, chronicling her treatments and the ups and downs of living with her condition. Well-spoken and positive, Destiny relies heavily on the support of her caring family to get her through the tough times.
When Make-A-Wish discovery volunteers first met with Destiny, she had tons of ideas for her wish. But after talking to them about her options, she realized that one wish encompassed all her passions – Disney World! Not only could she interact with all the characters at the park and animals at the Animal Kingdom, but she could continue to document every extraordinary minute so everyone could share in her excitement.
On Valentine’s Day 2019, Destiny and her family were in for a surprise. As part of Nevada State Bank’s Swish for a Wish, a fundraising campaign at Runnin’ Rebel Basketball home games, Destiny was about to find out her one true wish was coming true! Greeted by the entire UNLV Athletics Department applauding for her and holding up signs of encouragement, Destiny found out that she would soon be on her way to the Magic Kingdom!
Destiny’s wish was everything she hoped it would be and more. She got to meet all different types of animals and even meet her favorite characters, like Buzz Lightyear, who even gave her a free drink!
According to Destiny’s mom, Diane, the wish trip is something they will always cherish. “It brought us together as a family, much closer,” she said. “We were there just for her to forget about the doctor’s appointments. The impact was amazing.”
Special thanks to the Chiu family, UNLV Athletics, and Nevada State Bank for helping to make Destiny’s wish come true.