Wish on a STAR: 10-year-old Grace's nonprofit - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Wish on a STAR: 10-year-old Grace's nonprofit

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KEYSTONE (KWWL) - Like other 10-year-olds, Grace Gilbaugh likes to play on the playground and she goes to school. But she's also the founder of her very own not-for-profit organization.

"I know what it's like to be in a dangerous crisis, and I just feel like they don't need to be alone in this," said Grace.

The name of the nonprofit, Wish On a STAR, comes from STAR Syndrome. It's a genetic disorder so rare that very few people in the world are known to have it.

Grace is one. She spent years in and out of hospitals.

"It's been really hard on us," said Grace. "We've been through a lot of struggles."

Now Grace said she's better. She does pageants. She actually started her nonprofit as a project for a pageant.

Wish on a STAR sponsors families who need help financially or emotionally.

Saturday, there's a gala in honor of Jenny Groothuis, who left behind 15 kids when she died earlier this year.

"I felt bad for the 15 kids and the dad," said Gilbaugh.

Sunday, Grace is holding a benefit for Tom Smith, an 18-year-old whose been diagnosed with lymphoma.

"Tom's mom, Janet, she was a big favor in my life through my child crisis, and I feel like I need to repay her," said Grace.

After a weekend of galas and benefits, Monday morning it'll be time for the fifth grader to go back to school.

Links:

Wish on a STAR websitewww.wishonastarusa.org/

Wish on a STAR Facebookwww.facebook.com/pages/Wish-on-a-STAR/307943932695091

Jenny Groothuis Galawww.jennygroothuis.org/home.html

Tom Smith Benefitwww.wishonastarusa.org/tom-smith.html
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