AMHERST — Can you imagine dancing for 12 consecutive hours? UMass Amherst students and other participants of the 12th annual Children’s Miracle Network for the Kids Dance Marathon did just that, and it paid off.
Surpassing the 2018 goal of raising $200,000, the event raised $212,134.97 for Baystate Children’s Hospital, far exceeding the 2017 total of $133,000.
The UMass for the Kids student organization works year-round to create uplifting and interactive events that raise funds for the Baystate Children’s Hospital. The culmination of the group’s annual efforts is a 12-hour dance marathon, which runs from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and features activities, games, performances, and, of course, dancing.
“Just seeing the smiles on not just [the children’s] faces, but the families as well, was amazing,” said UMass senior Brady Sharon, vice president for external relations on the event’s executive board. “It was probably one of the most rewarding things I’ve done in my life.”
The funds raised through UMass for the Kids dance marathons have allowed Baystate Children’s Hospital to purchase important medical equipment, fund research, and implement facility updates. Most recently, the funds helped support the new Pediatric Procedure Unit.