Just under 2,000 children a year die from cancer throughout the world. As ethical, global citizens, it is our duty to do all we can to support these children and their families.
Countless numbers of fundraisers across the country such as Relay For Life, Alex’s Lemonade Stand, and more raise millions of dollars by hosting events and collecting people’s donations. THON is a student-run charity, committed to enhancing the lives of children and their families impacted by childhood cancer. Their mission is to provide emotional and financial support, spread awareness, and to ensure funding for research all in pursuit of a cure. NHS varsity cheerleaders, senior Alyssa Mielnicki and junior Rose Chrysoulakis have brought THON to NHS in hopes of bringing the community together and to raise money for an outstanding cause.
“Thon is an empowering event that unites communities to come together to help join in the fight to conquer childhood cancer,” said Alyssa.. “Four diamonds of Thon is a fund that was created over 41 years ago by a boy that was fighting his own battle of pediatric cancer. The four diamonds stand for courage, honesty, wisdom, and strength. This is something that every community can use because not only was this a metaphor for Chris’s battle but revealed to others fighting cancer that they had the strength and power to keep fighting.”
The upbringing of this organization isan inspiration for people and communities to get involved as well as becoming more aware of what can be done to support children battling cancer.
THON is also held at colleges and universities such as Rutgers and Penn State. At the college level, THON is a 46 hour dance marathon that brings together thousands of people. “Bringing it down to a more high school level event we will be cutting down the hours, but still keeping the same idea. Instead of holding it to just a dancing event, we will be bringing more field-like events that our students would like to participate in.”
The grades will be on their own teams, every grade will be assigned a different color shirt, and they will be competing against each other. This event at the end of the school year would be an ideal tie up of the year, it will bring the student body together, and it is all for a great cause.
Alyssa and Rose have organized a number of events such as the NHS varsity cheerleaders performing their routine and promoting THON, setting up a donor drive, and assembling their kickoff event. In addition to that, the girls have planned plenty of fundraising ideas for the rest of the school year. “Some fundraising ideas we have in mind include canning at local businesses, restaurant fundraisers, the selling of merchandise, school events, bake sales and more.” Selling simple bracelets, pencils, and pins raised a few hundred dollars by the cheerleaders that will be contributed to the organization. They are also hoping to get the middle and elementary schools involved by raffling and spreading the word around town.
Alyssa and Rose explain the benefits of bringing this event to NHS. “It raises money for a great cause, it’s an awesome way for students to get involved in the community, and participate in a school event. Also, students who participate in Mini-THON activities can include it on their resume, which will definitely help when applying to colleges.” It is important for the student body to get involved because it should be a cause supported by everybody. Besides that, it is an ideal opportunity to gather the students for something beneficial and lots of fun.