Skip to main content

Georgia College Miracle Recognized as Most Improved Dance Marathon

Georgia College Miracle at Georgia College and State University was recently recognized with the Most Improved Dance Marathon Award at the Miracle Network Dance Marathon Leadership Conference in July.

During the 2016-2017 academic year, GC Miracle focused on changing the perception on their campus that they were just a one-day event, turning Dance Marathon into a 365-day movement that engaged their entire campus in raising funds and awareness for Children’s Hospital, Navicent Health, their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in Macon, GA.

At the start of the year, the student leaders set goals to raise $175,000 and register 850 student participants, after raising $125,000 and having 717 participants in 2016.

“We realized quickly though that people don’t join organizations, people join people” GC Miracle’s current Executive Director, Ansley Jones wrote in their award application. “We could table or go canning all we wanted, but people weren’t going to sign up because they saw us on campus, people were going to sign up for how we made them feel. We realized that to make this into a movement we needed to build individual relationships with the people of Georgia College.”

The GC Miracle leadership set out to make genuine, personal connections with their peers and faculty and staff on campus, talking to them about why they participant in Dance Marathon and how involvement in the cause has personally impacted them.

After a year’s worth of work, GC Miracle had over 991 registered dancers and raised over $222,000, a 78% increase over 2016.

How did GC Miracle see such incredible growth in just one year? Check out some highlights from their 2016-2017 efforts:

$1 Day:

Before the school year started, GC Miracle wanted to kick off their fundraising efforts and motivate participants to fundraise during the summer. They hosted a $1 Day where students asked their friends and family to make a small $1 donation, which collectively ended up raising over $1,500 in one day.

View this post on Instagram

New day, new month, new ways to make miracles happen!! We can't believe its August either, but with 2 weeks left until school starts we can't wait to start making more miracles happen for the kids! Today, we are asking you to think about making a small contribution to such a worthy cause, The Children's Miracle Network. At the very least we hope you become more informed about this brand and want to be a part of such an amazing movement. 100% of everything GC Miracle raises goes directly to the kids at the Children's Hospital, Navicent Health in Macon, GA. If you're feeling generous on this beautiful Monday then I hope you'll consider donating something!! We got 99 problems but (hopefully) finding dollars isn't one #1DollarDayFTK 🤑🎈💚💙💜💛❤️ • • • Click the link in our bio to donate on donor drive! Or use this link: http://events.dancemarathon.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.event&eventID=1154

A post shared by Georgia College Miracle (@gcmiracle) on

Recognizing Faculty “Miracle Makers”:

Throughout the year, GC Miracle recognized faculty and staff who had registered to fundraise as Miracle Makers on their social media channels. This was a great way to develop relationships and encourage faculty/staff involvement while also stewarding those who had registered to participate. By the end of the year, the faculty/staff Miracle Makers had raised over $4,700!

FTKolor Run:

GC Miracle partnered with the Phi Mu and Alpha Tau Omega chapters on their campus to host an FTKolor Run, which served as a fundraiser for their hospital as well as the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Go Gold for Abe Campaign:

Throughout the month of September, in recognition of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, GC Miracle promoted their “Go Gold for Abe” campaign in honor of one of their Miracle Kids, Abe, who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2012. They shared posts about Abe for 29 days and challenged dancers to raise $29 in honor of Abe’s battle after he did not show signs of remission on day 29 of his treatment, making him one of just 5% of children who are not in remission after 29 days of leukemia treatments.

View this post on Instagram

This month GC Miracle has decided to Go Gold for Abe! Abe is one of our sweet Miracle kids who was diagnosed with leukemia on May 1, 2012. After a 3 week stay at the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Egleston Hospital Abe went home to continue outpatient therapy. His parents and doctors were confident that after the bone marrow test on Day 29 Abe would show a complete remission. But then Abe fell into the group of only 5% of children not in remission from leukemia on Day 29. He now had a major increase in his risk of relapse. After that his parents enrolled him in a clinical trial that would cause Abe receive inpatient chemo on and off for the first 7 months, outpatient weekly chemo for 2 months, and finally started Maintenance in March of 2013. He then reached complete remission after the consolidation phase, and has been in remission ever since. We have chosen to Go Gold for Abe and are challenging everyone to raise $29 during the month of September. We chose the number 29 to symbolize Abe's strength and resiliency. Even when he didn't show complete remission on Day 29 he kept fighting and eventually won the fight against cancer. Abe and all the kids like him that are fighting for their lives are the reason why we do everything we do. We fight to raise money for them so that they can fight and win against cancer. Go Gold with us this month and help kids like Abe win the fight against cancer! #29DaysOfAbe #GoGoldForAbe #ThisGenerationFightingForTheNext

A post shared by Georgia College Miracle (@gcmiracle) on

In class after the long weekend like….. Happy Day 5 of 29 Days of Abe! Keep going gold for Abe by raising $29 this…

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Tuesday, September 6, 2016

I mustache you a question….have you gone gold for Abe yet? You have a little over 16 days to participate in our…

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Cause Connection and Education:

In order to motivate and inspire their participants to get involved and fundraise, GC Miracle made it a priority to connect their campus to their cause and educate them about how their fundraising is making a difference at their local hospital. They created a video to announce their fundraising goal for the year as not just a dollar amount, but rather demonstrating the better future their donations will be able to create with a new hospital facility and the families that will be treated in it.

On their social media channels, they helped their campus understand the cause through posts that college students could understand and resonate with.

In the time it takes you to scroll through your Instagram feed and read this post 62+ children will have entered a Children's Miracle Network Hospital. This is why our cause is so important. If you spend time on social media take some time out to learn more about our cause at our website, Facebook, or donor drive (link in bio)! #ChildHealthDay #FTK

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Monday, October 3, 2016

They also connected students to the cause by not only having Miracle Kids at their events, but also by bringing students to the families and going out of their way to support the Miracle Kids, including attending their Miracle Kid Avery Lee’s soccer game.

GC Miracles supporting one of their miracle kids Avery Lee #FTK #GCMiracles #OurStudentsRock

Posted by Georgia College Office of Fraternity & Sorority Life on Tuesday, September 27, 2016

$100 Day:

On their 24-hour fundraising push day last October, GC Miracle challenged all of their participants to raise $100 in one day with the goal to collectively raise $24,000. Their campaign focused on how their fundraising would be used to help build the new pediatric care facility that Children’s Hospital, Navicent Health is hoping to construct in the next few years. GC Miracle posted graphics throughout the day that displayed their fundraising process with bricks being added to “build a hospital.”

Good news!! We are 1/4th of the way to our goal of $24,000, and it's only 10:30! Let's keep going 💯 This graphic…

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Wednesday, October 26, 2016

They also provided suggestions to help participants reach their personal $100 fundraising goal.

$100 Day is TWO DAYS AWAY! Here are some fundraising tips to help you reach $100 on the day of! We will be set up by the…

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Monday, October 24, 2016

GC Miracle hosted a “Table of Terror” on campus during the day where people could make donations to “terrorize” their friends by pie-ing them in the face, breaking an egg over their head, or making them eat strange condiments.

Thanks to everyone who came out to our 'Table of Terror' yesterday. We were sufficiently pied, egged, and terrorized. But it's worth it for the kids!!! Who knew pieing someone in the face could lead to 30k?

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Thursday, October 27, 2016

When they had reached their $24,000 goal by 8:00pm, the Executive Board capitalized on the energy from their participants and kept pushing, resulting in $30,000 raised by the end of the 24 hours and 185 of their participants who were registered at the time receiving donations on that day.

GC Miracle said that this was the day that they saw their goal to create a movement on campus come to life.

Exec Board Challenges:

Throughout the last few months before their event, GC Miracle paired up Executive Board members to participate in individual one-day fundraising challenges, with the exec board member who fundraised less than the other having to do a silly challenge, such as getting dressed up by a Miracle Kid, singing karaoke, and doing a “gallon challenge.”

 

Join Katie Elizabeth and Mollye Ariano as they go head to head for today's exec challenge! Whoever loses will have to…

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Thursday, January 12, 2017

Miracle’s Got Talent:

GC Miracle partnered with Phi Mu and Sigma Alpha Epsilon, two of CMN Hospital’s national Greek partners, to host their inaugural Miracle’s Got Talent. Students and Miracle Kids performed talents on stage with Miracle Kids also hosting the show, helping out backstage, and serving as the talent show judges. GC Miracle also gave each Miracle Kid their own “glam squad” that did their hair and make-up before the show while treating them to snacks and gifts. After the show, they hosted an autograph session for the Miracle Kids to sign autographs and feel like celebrities.

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Dance Marathon:

On April 1st, GC Miracle hosted their Dance Marathon event. During the event, they heard from Miracle families and hosted several fundraising initiatives, including a donation matching hour and a challenge to raise $1,600 in 20 minutes in honor of the 16 Miracle families they had at their event.

Their years-worth of hard work and passion paid off during their final total reveal, which got a pretty incredible (and emotional) reaction…

Nothing will ever top this moment #222kDance MarathonChildren's Hospital, Navicent Health

Posted by Georgia College Miracle on Sunday, April 2, 2017

 

Georgia College Miracle accomplished some pretty incredible things last year and we can’t wait to see what they’ll do this school year. To learn more about GC Miracle, check out their website, Facebook, and Instagram accounts and you can support their 2017-2018 fundraising efforts for their local hospital here.


Miracle Network Dance Marathon is an international movement, involving over 300 colleges and universities across North America that fundraise for their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Since its inception in 1991, Miracle Network Dance Marathon has raised more than $180 million–ensuring that no child or family fights pediatric illness or injury alone.

Learn more about Miracle Network Dance Marathon:

Facebook – Instagram – Website – Blog – YouTube