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university dance marathon raises money for children in need

By Kenneth Rudich (another installment for the Social Good Campaign)

A close friend and colleague of mine by the name of James George has jumped on the bandwagon to promote the social good in truly inspirational fashion.

He’ll be participating in the 2010 Indiana University Dance Marathon, a 36 hour event to raise money for Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana.  It will take place November 12 – 14.

The Indiana University Dance Marathon (IUDM) is the second largest student run philanthropic organization in the country, and it does fundraising year round to aid the kids at Riley.  Since 1991 IUDM has pulled in more than $8.5 million, and every penny has gone toward helping the hospital’s effort to treat all its patients, regardless of financial concerns.

While James is the type of person who views such a noble cause as reason enough to participate in it, he has a special motivation for doing so this time around on its 20th anniversary.

It turns out that one of his current fraternity pledge brothers spent the first two years of his life at Riley, where he underwent multiple surgeries to remove tissue doctors identified as becoming potentially cancerous.  That pledge brother went from nearly having his life cut unmercifully short to pursuing a college degree.  He is a testimony to the wonderful work being done at Riley.

To help make sure other children like him have access to the same quality care, James’ pledge class has rallied together behind their brother with the goal of raising $500 a piece between 32 people.  I’m guessing their commitment and drive will take them to a level that far exceeds their goal.

a timely email

It was only yesterday that I learned about this laudable gesture on the part of these young men and women associated with IUDM.  In one sense, the timing couldn’t be better for me because this particular post represents the 100th to be published on

Prior to hearing about this event, I was struggling with deciding what to write about, since it is a benchmark number.  I was groping for something meaningful.  After getting an email from James about this effort on behalf of the kids at Riley, it became a no-brainer because it promotes the social good in more ways than one.

First, it’s a reflection of the role education plays in getting young adults to give back to the society that nurtured them.  Second, it directly aids children and families who so desperately need the help.  And third, it supports research that builds our knowledge-base in the field of medicine, for now and into the future. 

All in all it’s a terrific illustration of social marketing, and what could be a more fitting subject for our 100th post?

you can get involved too

Lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention two or three ways you can get involved if you so desire.

You can make a tax deductible donation on James’ donation page at the website.  Click here to see his page.

In addition to, or in lieu of, a financial donation, you can help spread the word by whatever means you have at your disposal.  Feel free to share the IUDM story or link on your blogs, facebook pages, business websites, email, or twitter.

And finally, you can supplement this effort by giving your universal support to the social good on a daily basis, in all the many ways that are possible.  


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