Dancing for Those Who Can't

Dancing for Those Who Can’t

More than 300 students at Case Western Reserve University dance the night away to raise money for the kids at Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.

On February 13, 2016, more than 300 students at Case Western Reserve University danced the night away at SpartanTHON, an annual dance marathon fundraiser for UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital. Students at this year’s SpartanTHON raised nearly $70,000, the highest amount in the event’s 6-year history at the university.

A student-run event, SpartanTHON is more than a dance marathon. It brings together college students with Rainbow patients and their families for 12 hours of dance, games and inspirational story-telling. College students mix and mingle with some of Rainbow’s kids and take part in spirited competitions such as tug of war, limbo, trivia and bailing students out of “jail.”

“SpartanTHON is a celebration of the kids at Rainbow and a year’s hard work of raising money for them,” says Director Lindsey Burrow, 21, a graduating senior and nursing student. Lindsey, who was involved in similar dance marathons as a high school student, brought her passion for the fundraising event to Case Western Reserve University and along with other students, helped grow the program from $18,000 her freshman year to $53,000 last year.

“I think I’ve always had a passion for helping kids,” she says. “Through the dance marathon, I’ve been exposed to some of the hardships that Rainbow’s kids go through and it has fueled my desire to be a pediatric nurse.”

In fact, many dance marathon participants are future doctors, nurses and other health care professionals, joining together for a common cause – to dance for those who can’t. That’s the motto of SpartanTHON.

At the end of the exhausting 12-hour marathon, long after the young patients returned home or to the hospital for a good night’s sleep, the students at Case Western Reserve University joined together to perform one last dance -- the Morale Dance -- a celebratory line dance signaling the end to another successful fundraiser for UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.

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