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Dancing for a Cause

UNT Eaglthon dance marathon

Dancing all night might not automatically equate with saving lives in most people's minds, but for the students at the University of North Texas (UNT), that's their goal.

Through a concept introduced by Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, universities like UNT unite students for a dance party to raise money for local Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, like Cook Children's. It's a unique way for students to learn leadership skills and gain nonprofit experience, as they plan the campus-wide event.

The special day consists of an eight-hour dance party, multiple activities and entertainment. Many Cook Children's patient families attend and often share their stories to help connect students to the cause.

"I heard my calling and knew my mission was to do everything I could do for the kids. It changed my life. I asked to be a part of Eaglethon professionally and it has become personal. I will forever and always be for the kids." –Patricia Rodriguez.

Over the past 10 years, Eaglethon has raised more than $120,000 for Cook Children's and the money they raise increases every year. They recently celebrated their largest fundraising year, bringing in almost $40,000.

As Eaglethon turns a decade old, the executive planning team knew they wanted to do something special. To introduce their campus and community to some of their participating patient families, the Eaglethon team planned birthday parties for two Cook Children's patients, Ingrid and Alexis, who both live close to the UNT campus.

Both patients have fought separate battles at Cook Children's and have a passion for giving back to the place that saved their lives. Ingrid's parents are UNT alumni and are amazed at the amount of young college students choosing to give back to their community.

Eaglethon campus advisor Patricia Rodriguez wasn't quite sure what to expect when she initially chose to get involved. But that quickly changed.

"When I heard my first miracle story everything clicked," she said. "I heard my calling and knew my mission was to do everything I can for the kids. It changed my life. I asked to be a part of Eaglethon professionally and it has become personal. I will forever and always be for the kids."

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals: Helping Local Kids

Upcoming Miracle Balloon campaigns:

  • March
    Dairy Queen
  • April
    Ace Hardware
    RE/MAX
  • May
    Costco
    CEFCO convenience stores
  • Year-round
    Panda Express