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HOA forbids child with cancer from having her Make-A-Wish dream come true

The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted a 6-year-old girl’s wish — a dream playhouse — but the family’s neighborhood association forbids its construction.


Ella Schultz, who lives in Missouri, is fighting cancer, but now her family has another fight on their hands with their homeowners association. After they went through the Make-A-Wish Foundation to build Ella a dream playhouse in their backyard, they filed plans through their HOA — plans that ensured the shingles on the playhouse would match those on the homes in the rest of the neighborhood. Unfortunately those plans were rejected.

The Stonegate Homeowners Association said that building the playhouse would go against the “covenants” of the neighborhood, but that doesn’t mean much to Ella, who cried when she was told the playhouse was denied. And the rejection doesn’t sit well with others — some of the family’s neighbors were contacted by KCTV5, and they said they were bewildered that the plans for construction had been halted.

I don’t live in a neighborhood that has an HOA, so I don’t totally understand what they’re like (except my aunt wasn’t allowed to put up a clothesline because of hers, which sounded really strange to me when I was a kid). I’m sure there are benefits to them (like maintaining the property values of the neighborhood), but how can you in good conscience deny a child with cancer her Make-A-Wish? Would any of her neighbors look outside in this girl’s backyard and think anything negative about seeing her play in a fancy playhouse?

It breaks my heart that this little girl, who has been through so much, was crushed when what she had hoped and wished for was denied.

The family has a GoFundMe account set up to help the family with their medical expenses, and a movement has sprung up for Ella and her wish — those wanting to show support are decorating their mailboxes and front porches with the color green. In addition, you can post to social media using the hashtag #SaveEllasWish to help raise awareness.

The HOA has declined to comment and said they didn’t want to discuss this situation with the media until they’ve had a chance to revisit the issue. They should definitely reconsider, and they should also grant this family an exception to the rules of the housing association.

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