On May 15, BCFS System President and CEO Kevin C. Dinnin welcomed Project Angel Fares (PAF) as the newest addition to the BCFS System of nonprofit organizations. We wanted to give you a closer look at this amazing organization that helps make dreams come true for children and families from all over the country. Founded in 2012, PAF is a San Antonio-based nonprofit that works closely with Morgan’s Wonderland, the San Antonio-based theme park for families with children who have special needs.
Since 2010, Morgan’s Wonderland has provided an opportunity for children with special needs to experience the joys of a theme park that is designed to cater to their unique life situation. And beginning in 2016, that includes the water park Morgan’s Inspiration Island. Both parks offer free admission to any and all children with special needs. However, for families that must travel long distances, that is just a small part of the cost burden.
This is where Project Angel Fares comes in. PAF works to help provide families with children who have special needs this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the joys of Morgan’s Wonderland and Morgan’s Inspiration Island with a 4-day, 3-night trip with all travel expenses paid.
Also joining the BCFS System family is PAF’s Executive Director Sharon Krietzburg. Sharon works tirelessly on increasing awareness of the organization in the local community and beyond. By expanding financial sponsorships and growing the donor base, she has been able to expand the number of families PAF can bring to Morgan’s Wonderland and Morgan’s Inspiration Island.
Sharon joined PAF in 2016 after meeting the founder, Kevin Johnson, at an event in San Antonio. She had retired some years earlier in Nevada and she and her husband, Jack, had built their “dream home” in Santa Fe, New Mexico. But she said it wasn’t long before the dream changed and they decided to move to San Antonio to look for their next adventure.
Sharon said she thought she would be a puddle of emotions before taking on her new job, but most days she finds it to be pure joy. “Once anyone comes to the park, it touches you,” she said. “Seeing the look on these children’s faces. You see a calm wash over them as they get to do things they had never been able to do with their families. It is pretty special.”
Like so many other nonprofits, PAF is adjusting to the new normal brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic which dictated the decision to close Morgan’s Wonderland and Morgan’s Inspiration Island for the 2020 season. PAF also made the difficult, yet prudent, decision to postpone its annual fundraising golf tournament that had been scheduled for later this summer. But work continues to help more dreams become reality starting in 2021. Sharon will office at the BCFS System Headquarters building later this year. Welcome Sharon and Project Angel Fares to the BCFS System Family!