Last year, University of South Carolina Dance Marathon raised $703,289 to help the kids at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital, shattering its record total of $527,810 from 2016. What does a group of college students do for an encore after a success like that? They return determined to raise the bar even higher.
The goal for 2017-18 is set at $1 million, and the students will work from now until the organization’s Main Event, a 14-hour dance marathon March 3, to make it happen.
“This year we’re believing in the power of one person, one mission, one team, one goal, and what this really can mean is so many miracles for so many families,” said USCDM President Jax Boucher.
The first $525,000 raised this year will go to the Child Life Department at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital. The department’s mission is to make life more comfortable and more like home for the kids who are treated at the hospital and for their families, and it will be fully funded by USCDM, as it was last year.
Every dollar beyond that $525,000 will go toward the building of the Dance Marathon at the University of South Carolina Playground on the hospital grounds. “It’ll be specially designed for children in wheelchairs, children connected to IV poles,” Boucher said. “This will be a place of hope for them and their families, a place to be kids again in such a scary time for so many of them.”
To raise $1 million would seem daunting to many. For the organization, it would mean nearly doubling its previous best total in just two years. But those who’ve seen this group make miracles before had no doubt as the goal was unveiled Wednesday that these students will find a way.
To learn more about USCDM and to contribute to the mission, visit the group’s website.