About Us

Rockaway W.I.S.H. (Women Inspired to Support & Help) was formed in 2006, from a simple meeting amongst childhood friends looking to make a difference in the community. Our motivation stemmed from other local civic organizations, mainly The Graybeards (senior basketball league turned philanthropists) & the R.I.B.S. ("Rockaway Irish Boys", who lost several friends on 9/11). After a few discussions and recruitment sessions, W.I.S.H. was up & running. With an emphasis on causes affecting women & children, our immediate efforts focused on school supply drives, holiday gift giving, and families battling illnesses. As our presence in the Rockaways became more established, both membership and fundraising quickly experienced substantial growth.

Women are attracted to join W.I.S.H. because they have an innate desire to aid & assist their neighbors in times of need, or they themselves have been a beneficiary of our good deeds. The group has become a beautiful, contagious, circle of giving that continues to attract new members, volunteers, and efforts each year.

From 2006-2012, highlights of WISH include:

  • Sponsorship & coaching of local sports leagues (Rockaway Beach Basketball Summer Classic, Little League, Beach Volleyball)
  • Treats with Santa – holiday gift giving event
  • Mother's Day Flowers – delivered to moms of active duty military personnel, women who have lost children, women battling illness
  • WISH Rocks – concert benefiting children afflicted with illnesses in the neighborhood
  • School Supply and Baby Item Drives – enabling us to distribute these much needed items to families in need
  • Financial assistance – for families going through difficult times

In 2012, Rockaway bore the brunt of Hurricane Sandy’s wrath. We were on the receiving end of donations from all over the country and quickly established a relief center to distribute supplies to hundreds of local families. After receiving a grant from the Robin Hood Foundation, W.I.S.H. effectively derived a system to distribute thousands of dollars amongst the community. The storm was a turning point for the group and is when we became an official 501c3 charitable organization.

Sandy has long passed and we continue to refine and re-focus our efforts on new causes, while staying true to our root mission. Since 2012, W.I.S.H. is proud of our continued efforts to support the community through:

  • Annual scholarship – monetary grant awarded to a member’s child, entering high school
  • Shining Stars – weekend program for 8-12 year old girls, building self-confidence & healthy habits
  • Red, WISH, and Blue – annual Summer kick-off fundraiser
  • Prom & Communion Dress Drive – collecting dresses for underprivileged girls celebrating these milestones
  • Catch a Cure – Fall 5K, honoring women who have lost their battle with cancer, & those who continue to fight the deadly disease
  • Ladies Who Brunch – annual Winter fundraiser, honoring local women for their community service
  • WISHing – we recognized people in the neighborhood who are going the extra mile to help their neighbors

These are just a few of our initiatives and efforts W.I.S.H. has underway. As current events unfold (most recently Hurricanes Harvey & Irma), we will react accordingly and keep our members aware of all donations & platforms we assist.

Thank you for your continued support!

Mission Statement

To recognize the needs of the community and volunteer our time and talents to assist our neighbors during difficult times.

To promote participation in charitable events, particularly those that bring attention to and support causes that affect the lives of women and children.

To encourage a sense of civil obligation and community service in the Rockaways.

To foster new friendships and support networks amongst women in the Rockaways.

To raise funds and provide financial assistance to members of the Rockaway community in need and to causes which promote positive development in the Rockaways.

To inspire the young women of the Rockaways to be compassionate, understanding and active members of the community.