Essay on The Dance Marathon at the Univeristy of Northern Iowa

Essay on The Dance Marathon at the Univeristy of Northern Iowa

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University of Northern Iowa Dance Marathon is an organization that raises money for the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network. The organization aims to provide emotional and financial support for families with children facing life threatening illnesses by raising money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and organizing events that increase student and community awareness. This money then is put towards things like research, education, equipment and pediatric ward enhancements so the children and families can feel a little more comfortable during their stay at the hospital. The big event was on March 1, 2014, but the organization completes events throughout the year to fundraise as much money as possible for the Miracle Network kiddos, like a 5k color run on campus, trick-or-treating for kids who can’t, and selling grilled cheese at midnight during homecoming celebrations.
While there are many small happenings throughout the year, the main focus is on “The Big Event”. This is a 12-hour long dance marathon where dancers who have spent the year raising money for the cause dance their hearts out, get to meet the children part of the Children’s Miracle network and their families, and have opportunities to continue giving (whether through signing up to donate bone marrow or having hair cut for Locks of Love). During this big party, attendees are not allowed to sit/lay down or have any caffeine. This is to try and replicate a tiny bit of how the kiddos feel on a daily basis, having to go through treatments and long hospital stays while still trying to keep their spirits up. Throughout the 12 hours, families are invited to take the stage and tell the story of their experiences with Universi...

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...the marathon, form a sense of unity and bond over love for the same cause. It is important for any athlete or coach working with a team to know how to work as one unit to achieve a common goal, rather than trying to pull all the weight alone. Raising over $176,000 for UNI Dance Marathon 2014 would have been impossible for one person to achieve!
I am very honored to have been part of this organization for the 2013-2014 school year and I plan to participate next year as well. At the end of the event I always feel so inspired and ready to make even more a difference in the lives of others, whether through volunteering, my future profession, or other organization at the University of Northern Iowa. I have learned so much from the Miracle Kiddos and their families, and plan to carry those life lessons with me as I pursue a career in the exercise/health science field.

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