Hello, my name is Jamie Holmes Ward. I founded Jamie’s Dream Team in 2005 when I was just eighteen (18) years old. Jamie’s Dream Team is a Pennsylvania nonprofit corporation that is considered a public charity by the Internal Revenue Service and is exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The mission of Jamie’s Dream Team is to offer hope when there is little, to ease the burden caused by serious illness, injury, disability, trauma, or catastrophic events, and to finally celebrate individual differences by acknowledging dreams as possibilities. The purpose of Jamie’s Dream Team as a public charity is to provide assistance and/or make distributions to or on behalf of qualifying individuals who are handicapped, disabled, terminally ill, severely injured or suffering from a serious medical condition, disease, or trauma. Jamie’s Dream Team is managed by a nine (9) member community-based Board of Directors. All funds raised by or donated to Jamie’s Dream Team are used to further its charitable purpose.
I was born with a rare disorder known as V.A.T.E.R. Syndrome. Children born with V.A.T.E.R. Syndrome can have congenital abnormalities of the vertebrae, lower intestine, trachea, esophagus, and kidneys. I was born with abnormalities in all those areas. I have had over forty-five (45) surgeries and/or medical procedures since my birth, including surgeries to reconstruct my esophagus, trachea, and lower intestine, and to fuse several vertebrae in my spine. One (1) of my kidneys disintegrated and my remaining kidney does not fully function. I have been very fortunate throughout my numerous hospitalizations and surgeries, though, to have had the support and love of my family, friends, doctors and nurses. Although I was seldom without pain and sometimes, embarrassed about my condition, when friends and family showed up to support me with balloons and other gifts I felt like a Princess. I remember wanting to share this feeling of joy with the other kids at Children’s Hospital that I would meet. All I wanted was to give them my balloons and have them feel a little of the happiness that others had brought to me. Despite the pain and suffering that I have, and will continue to endure, my heart has always been with others who are suffering. As such, I started Jamie’s Dream Team to fulfill my dream of helping people of all ages who are suffering from serious illness, injury, disability or trauma. I know personally that fulfilling dreams is the best healing of all, as receiving a dream helps heal the spirit.
Thank you for your interest in Jamie’s Dream Team. I hope you will find the mission and purpose of Jamie’s Dream Team as uplifting and fulfilling as I do.