Friday, October 31, 2008
Up ‘Til Dawn letter-sending party planned for Nov. 12By Eric Reikowski, media relations assistant
OU students are invited to the fourth annual Up ‘Til Dawn letter-sending party on Wednesday, Nov. 12 from 5-10:30 p.m. in the Oakland Center Banquet Rooms. The program is a student-led initiative dedicated to raising funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the premier treatment and research center for children with catastrophic illnesses.
Since opening in 1962, the facility has helped lift the survival rate among children with catastrophic illnesses from less than 20 percent to more than 70 percent without burdening families with costly medical bills.
“Patients and families never have to pay for treatments that are not covered by insurance,” said Amanda Rymiszewski, executive director of Up ‘Til Dawn. “Those families without insurance are never asked to pay.”
The letter-sending campaign serves as a major fundraising engine for St. Jude. Participants send pre-written letters to family and friends encouraging them to support St. Jude's with a donation. Students who send at least 50 letters are entered to win an Apple iPod Touch. They may register as an individual or as part of a team.
“In March, we announce the individuals and teams who raised the most money and wrote the most letters,” said Rymiszewski. “We also award prizes to those individuals and teams.”
To obtain a registration form, students can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. All registration forms should be turned in to the Center for Student Activities office located on the lower level of the Oakland Center in Room 49.
This year’s letter-sending party, themed “Fighting through the Decades,” includes a variety of music, free food, great door prizes and entertainment. The event will also feature a special presentation on the developments in cancer research since St. Jude's opened.
Rymiszewski has high hopes for this year’s fundraising campaign, noting that Up ‘Til Dawn has raised more than $40,000 over the last two years.
“Every donation is important because it costs about $1.3 million to run St. Jude each day, she said. “Eighty-five cents of every dollar donated goes directly to the hospital.”
Along with its annual letter-sending party, the organization hosts other events to raise money for St. Jude's. A fundraising dinner at Max & Erma’s restaurant is being planned for the winter semester, with 20 percent of the evening's tab going to the hospital.
For more information, visit the Up ‘Til Dawn Web site or e-mail email@example.com.