Little did I know that I would become this year’s Executive Director.
What did I know about SHOCKERTHON? All I knew was that we raised money for Children’s Miracle Network, all of the money raised stayed 100% local, and that we were the largest philanthropic event on campus. So when I first became the director, the only thing on my mind was that we had to stay on track to continue to grow as an event and also with the amount of money that we raised. I was flooded with emails, calls, text messages, and stress, trying to ensure that we stayed on track. And about halfway through this year I was beyond scared and stressed about the state of SHOCKERTHON 2014.
Then I attended Dance Marathon Leadership Conference. There I met many people and learned that SHOCKERTHON was only 1 of 250 Dance Marathons around the country. During the third day of the conference there were some families that came and gave their story of how Dance Marathon and Children’s Miracle Network has supported them through all of the trials and struggles that their family has had to endure with their child’s illness. We learned of a child named Oliver “Ollie” Tibbles. “Ollie” lost his life to the cancer that was in his body and his mother was the woman who shared their story. It wasn’t until that moment that I realized that it isn’t the number of participants that attend, the inflatables, the morale dance, or even the amount of money we raise that matters. What we do isn’t for those things. What we give is hope. By standing for 12 exhausting hours you aren’t standing just for the kids that are there or that are in the hospital, you are standing for every person that has ever been or will be affected by Children’s Miracle Network and the hope that they provide.
We have this saying that we casually mention in passing to other SHOCKERTHON participants or even at the event. “FOR THE KIDS!” I learned at the Dance Marathon Leadership Conference that that phrase shouldn’t be something that we just say in casual conversation, or just at the SHOCKERTHON event. It is something we should try and live by. Don’t just say it; BE IT! Be For The Kids. Be FTK! Stand for those that can’t and stand for the hope that they need. Hope can go a long way, and it can change lives.
That is why I will be attending SHOCKERTHON 2014 on November 22nd. Not because I hope we raise over $70,000, but because I will stand for those that can’t, and I will stand for hope. I will BE FOR THE KIDS, and I always will be.
SHOCKERTHON is made possible by the donations from our generous sponsors. A special thanks to our sponsors Mel Hambelton Ford, Kansas Star® Arena, Meritrust Credit Union, Auto Masters, Credit Union of America, Cessna United Friendship Fund, Cargill® and the Learjet Employees Care Fund. Without the contributions from these sponsors, this event would not have the lasting impact that it does on the community.
For The Kids,