What does $500,000 mean to you?
Tonight marks the start of Day to DM 2019, the largest fundraising push of the year for Dance Marathon and the 2nd largest event. "We came together to fight and that is how we are going to kick off tonight" Allie Stutting, DM26 Executive Director, used these simple but powerful words to commence the event.
While "For the kids" always remains Dance Marathon's mantra, on this day, Day to DM, we place a special emphasis on the financial support provided by our organization. The fundraising goal for Day to DM 19 is $500,000, a number that holds special significance for Dance Marathon and our families. On average, it takes about half a million dollars to support one pediatric cancer patient. But, for the Dashiell Codd family, this number is personal.
I spoke with Dashiell’s Mom, Pam Codd, about what the $500,000 meant to her. Pam shared with me how during Dashiell's treatment he received a Liver Transplant. These transplants are extremely expensive surgeries and required payment not only for the operation but also payment for things like the emergency airlift Dashiell needed to get to the proper hospital to perform the procedure. Pam shared that after speaking with Dashiell's social worker, she learned that without insurance the total cost of his liver transplant cost $500,000. This was only for one transplant, only one step along Dashiell's cancer journey.
The $500,000 goal for Day to DM is a reminder of what we are doing and why we fight. Being able to alleviate some of those financial pressures that our families face not only enables premiere treatment for our families but also allows them to prioritize caring for their child. These families deserve to cherish each and every moment they have with their children, and should not spend one second worrying about how to afford treatment. And although Dance Marathon can not erase all the financial burden, we certainly can and have made a difference.
So over these next 26.2 hours commit to the movement and the mission of Dance Marathon. Reach out to family, friends, professors, co-workers etc. Remember the significance behind the $500,000, and what that money could do for our families. Because digging in today can save lives tomorrow.
Grace Zukowski, Public Relations Committee, DM26