Last Friday, Feb. 24, Harriton High School staff and students danced, snacked and participated in a number of activities to fundraise more than $20,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Harriton’s event, a Dance-A-Thon organized by teacher Brian Klick and about 30 student volunteers from several student groups, including Harriton’s National Honor Society, the Harriton Service League and a group of International Baccalaureate Students.
Klick, a survivor of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma who’s been in remission since he first diagnosed in 2004, said the idea came about after a Harriton student was diagnosed with the disease.
“Our major inspiration in the endeavor was current senior Austin Wortley, who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and just underwent a stem cell transplant,” Klick wrote in an e-mail. “We proposed the idea to the student body through a student-made video, featuring Austin, and an all-school assembly, at which I spoke about my own battle with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, on Feb. 2.”
Klick said students were asked to raise $30 to participate in the event and were given fundraising pledge sheets to get started.
Harriton was able to acquire great incentive prizes from local donors to inspire students to go above and beyond the $30 required to participate in the Dance-A-Thon.
Schaffer Sound donated a DJ for the event, local eateries donated food and many local businesses donated gift cards as raffle items.
Students danced for the event, as well as played karaoke and ping-pong for the seven hours from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. the Dance-A-Thon was in effect.
“My personal favorite part of the night was the ‘Who Are You Dancing For?’ board, on which students could write the names of those they knew who had battled cancer that they wanted to honor with their efforts,” Klick added.
The high school had a goal of $15,000 for the event, and was fortunate enough to get $5,000 more than anticipated.
“The students were incredible, faculty were able to come out and support us with their children, and the entire school community had a great time for a great cause,” Klick said.