After three deaths in the family over one summer, I had three very different—yet all unsatisfying—experiences that led me to conclude that ‘paying your respects’ is a broken model. Each sympathy gesture seemed rootless, lacked meaning and was somewhat wasteful. I had no idea whether the gifts I sent were appreciated or even received by the families.
I started Wishbar with an idea to make sympathy simple. Thinking back to my wedding, my husband and I used an online service that let our guests fund our honeymoon with experiences we really wanted. We still talk about one of our favorite gifts, a picnic in Napa Valley with a box of fried chicken and sparkling wine. People want to be guided when they give, and seek validation that their efforts are thoughtful enough to remember, years later.
Wishbar taps into the need for an easy, modern way to let well-wishers express sympathy while also fulfilling a family’s wishes and needs. We manifest community, connection and empathy through unique gifts and experiences that give families comfort and help them process grief a little easier.