The Mississippi College Dance Marathon (MCDM) began in 2016 and is the Mississippi College branch of the Miracle Network Dance Marathon. It is a non-profit organization that aims to raise money and support for children fighting various childhood illnesses. The Mississippi College Dance Marathon began in 2016 and will celebrate its fifth year in April of 2021. During the first year, MC raised approximately $12,000 and has nearly doubled those funds every year since then. MCDM benefits the Children’s of Mississippi hospital located in downtown Jackson. When the Mississippi College Dance Marathon began, Children’s simultaneously broke ground on an expansion project that would triple the size of the hospital. This new expansion at Children’s would include an in-patient and out-patient clinic, a surgical floor, in-patient care rooms, imaging centers, and two NICU floors.
Because Children’s of Mississippi is the only children’s hospital in the state of Mississippi as well as the only hospital equipped with Level 4 Critical NICU capabilities, the expansion was a necessary endeavor to serve the community.
MCDM’s funds have gone toward several different aspects of that expansion project, such as upgrading cancer patient care facilities, two expanded NICU floors, and new imaging rooms.
The MCDM operates with no budget, relying solely on volunteers and donations. Dance Marathon aims to have participation from students and alumni of Mississippi College in the form of fundraising, attending the event, promotion, and participation.
The main event of the MCDM is a final evening which is referred to as the “Dance Marathon.” At this event, participants dance consistently for six hours to honor the way Children’s of Mississippi patients fight every day. In addition to dancing, the event consists of special guests, food, in-event fundraising, and the final reveal of the total amount raised that year. The bulk of the fundraising happens before this final event. The evening of dancing acts as culmination of participants’ efforts rather than the sole engine driving fundraising efforts.
Last year, MCDM won the Miracle Maker Award. MCDM won this award because they had a 69% marginal increase of funds raised for a Dance Marathon being in the range year 4-6.
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