BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Indiana University’s 36-hour dance marathon raised more than $2.6 million over the weekend for Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health, a record for the annual fundraising event.
“Participating in IUDM is the most rewarding experience of my life,” IU Dance Marathon public relations director Nicholas Kolar said. “Throughout the marathon, families of Riley Hospital for Children constantly explain to us the meaning and impact of our hard work.
“Most rewarding, though, are the smiles of the Riley children during the marathon. Seeing their energy, which often outmatches ours, over the course of the 36-hour marathon is incredible.
“Finally, this year’s event was successful because of the more than 900 committee members and more than 2,500 dancers. Seeing more than 3,000 college students join to battle a cause as large as pediatric infectious disease is humbling. These committee members in particular have worked for an entire year to make IUDM 2013 the best marathon yet, and it has been my privilege to work with them.”
This year’s IU Dance Marathon, which took place Nov. 15 to 17 in the IU Tennis Center on the Bloomington campus, raised $2,622,123.21.
That’s well over the $2.1 million raised last year and represents the total raised at all events throughout the year, including funds raised by similar dance marathons at partner high schools in the area. The final 21 cents is donated each year to represent each member of IU Dance Marathon’s executive council who worked alongside thousands of committee members, volunteers and dancers to make the event a reality.
This year, organizers treated the 36-hour marathon as a single event. The past two years, organizers broke the fundraising marathon into two 18-hour windows, repeating activities within that timeframe. The switch was aimed at encouraging participants to take part in the entire 36-hour event. In addition, Indianapolis Colts players Matt Overton and Pat McAfee hosted a talent show and spent time with participants and Riley kids on Saturday afternoon.
IU Dance Marathon began in 1991 in honor of Ryan White, an activist and Riley Hospital for Children patient who died of complications from AIDS in 1990. The second-largest student-run philanthropic organization in the nation, IU Dance Marathon has raised more than $16 million since its inception.
“Surpassing $2 million for two consecutive years for the benefit of children at Riley Hospital for Children is an incredible accomplishment,” said Jason Mueller, director of regional communications for Riley Children’s Foundation. “Dedication and selfless attitudes have prevailed for the past 23 years, promoting a can-do attitude amongst all IUDM participants. As a result, IUDM is one of the most respected student organizations across the country.
“Our hearts of gratitude extend to the students who work diligently year-round to achieve this success.”
About Riley Children’s Foundation
Riley Children’s Foundation supports Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health, Camp Riley and the James Whitcomb Riley Museum Home. As Indiana’s only comprehensive hospital dedicated exclusively to the care of children, Riley Hospital has provided compassionate care, support and comfort to children and their families since 1924. Each year children from all 92 Indiana counties turn to Riley Hospital and its regional clinics throughout the state more than 300,000 times. Riley Hospital’s partnership with Indiana University Health and its strong affiliation with the Indiana University School of Medicine make Riley Hospital the leader in pediatric care in the state and the region.