History of Dance Marathon at Hope
The first annual Dance Marathon at Hope College took place in 2000. In the inaugural year, it was expected that a school of Hope’s size would only raise $4,800. But, as a result of much hard work and dedication, the marathon brought in over $23,000 in donations for Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. In the years that followed, the program has evolved to include numerous fundraising and awareness-building activities such as the Miracle Auction, the Christmas holiday party for miracle families, and most recently a Hope basketball game “for the kids” at which miracle families attend and money is raised. Student participation in the event has grown over the years, as well. Currently, more than 800 Hope students contribute to Dance Marathon as members of planning committees, or as dancers and moralers.
Children’s Miracle Network
Children’s Miracle Network is an international non-profit organization dedicated to helping children by raising funds and awareness for 170 children’s hospitals throughout North America. Each year, these non-profit hospitals treat 17 million children with diseases, injuries, and birth defects of every kind. Children’s Miracle Network hospitals treat all children regardless of affliction or the family’s ability to pay.
Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital
Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in Western Michigan dedicated to providing comprehensive care to children. It serves as a referral center for newborns, infants, children, and adolescents from 37 counties. Helen DeVos provides medical care that is generally not available at community hospitals. It is a special resource for local health care centers and hometown physicians. It receives no direct state aid and depends upon private support to expand health care programs and services.
There are several essential programs at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital that rely on philanthropy to remain available for the children and families. Some of these programs include:
- Center for Child Protection
- Congenital Heart Center
- Child Life Services
- Kidney Dialysis and Transplants
- Childhood Cancer
- Neonatal Intensive Care