Why I Am FTK All DM Day
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Why I Am FTK All DM Day

This is so much more than a fundraiser.

Why I Am FTK All DM Day
St. Ambrose University Dance Marathon

It's been almost a month and I'm still in shock. The good kind of shock, amazement. $223,861.05 For The Kids.

Someone pinch me I must be dreaming. Looking around the room, it's smiles, tears of pure joy streaming down facing, people hugging, jumping up and down. From an outsider's view, you would never know this room of 600 dancers had been on their feet for 13.1 hours. You might think 'these people are crazy' and you would be right; we are crazy, crazy passionate.

On April 1, 2017 St. Ambrose University Dance Marathon raised almost a quarter of a million dollars for the University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital, all while spending time with and getting to know our miracle families and hear their stories, dancing, laughing, singing, sending a shoutout to one of our kiddos who was in the hospital and needs our love and support, celebrating, and ugly crying.

Sure the Big Event is the most memorable day of the year and it's a huge day for any Dance Marathon, but there's much more to it. The biggest part of Dance Marathon (DM) is the why. Why do you fundraise all year? Why are you running around in green and orange screaming FTK? Why do spend 13.1 hours on your feet? Why do you dance?

Why? Because every penny raised goes to families with a kiddo in the hospital. It pays for meals, for celebrations on transplant days and end of treatment days. Funds from DM allowed a family to bury their daughter where they wanted, and without dance marathon they wouldn't have been able to. A family never has to fight alone because there is an army of over 600 people who are constantly rooting for them; sharing their facebook updates, participating in direct fundraisers along with DM, being a last minute babysitter when a family needs someone fast. How powerful is it knowing that you can do something, anything for a family that is in need.

I dance because no child should have to lose their childhood. I dance for more family parties, for more siblings wrestling each other, for more political debates at Thanksgiving because everyone is able to sit around a table together. I dance for future nurses, doctors, lawyers, teachers, and fighting bees. I dance for more nights staying up way too late laughing until your belly hurts and there are tears streaming down your face. I dance so that parents never have to watch their child suffer, and so that no parent has to say goodbye. I dance to celebrate the lives of the kiddos that are no longer with us; for the families that are missing a member that they feel love and support in times of grief and desperation.

So tell me, why do you dance?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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