From Mary McIntee, Coordinator of Community Service:
Up ‘til Dawn is a student-led, philanthropic and fundraising program hosted by colleges and universities across the nation to raise funds for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The program consists of students participating in a letter-writing campaign, where they are asked to bring 50 names and addresses of family and friends whom they could send a donation letter to asking for their support for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. After the letter writing, students participate in a thank-you celebration put on by the student-led committees.
This past November, Senior Sinead O’Mahony hosted the first annual Up ‘til Dawn event at Keene State College. The planning and preparation stages began back in June, when Sinead and fellow committee member Erin Magoon traveled to Memphis, Tennessee, to visit the St. Jude Hospital. After having firsthand experience with the organization and the event, Sinead and Erin decided to start their own events committee at Keene. They recruited five other students, Daniel Colina, Sam Malwal, Stacey Higgins, Lindsay Houlihan, and Jackie Vanacore, as well as the current AmeriCorps VISTA, Alyssa Day, to help serve on the Up ‘til Dawn executive board.
On November 9 from 6 to 11 p.m., approximately 180 students came out and participated in the Up ‘til Dawn letter writing campaign. Throughout the night over 4,600 donation letters were written and sent out, asking friends and family members to help support the St. Jude hospital. In attendance were two St. Jude representatives, who were extremely impressed and proud of the outcome of Keene’s first annual Up ‘til Dawn event. After students finished their letters, they were able to participate in the thank-you celebration that was held the same night. Students had the opportunity to play several games such as life-size Jenga, ping-pong, mummy-wrap, doughnut eating contest, and even a large scaled gladiator challenge. At the end of the night, several prizes were raffled off including both an iPod touch and a Nintendo Wii.
The event was well received by the Keene State community and will be an annual event. As of February, the first KSC event raised over $18,000.00.
If you would like more information about next year’s event, or if you would like to donate to the St. Jude Hospital, please contact Sinead O’Mahony at email@example.com.
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