South Dakota Collaboration - Dance Marathon

South Dakota Collaboration

  • South Dakota Collaboration


    Two rising programs in the Dance Marathon Network hail from the great state of South Dakota. University of South Dakota (USD) and South Dakota State University (SDSU) are both very similar programs: school enrollment, athletic rivals, both even raised mid-$80,000 for Dance Marathon in 2015. Even better? They have great partnership philosophies and programs.

    USD DakotaThon strives to go beyond the easy ask. They have created a comprehensive incentive system for local businesses who are interested in becoming partners. They realize the long-term benefit in creating sustainable, creative, and mutually beneficial partnerships. Here are two examples:

    Round-Up Days at grocery stores. All cashiers for a day ask customers to round-up their total and donate those cents to DakotaThon.

    Gas stations. They partner with a gas station that donates 2 cents of every gallon pumped for an entire month.

    Audrey Truhe, Co-President of DakotaThon, says: “Our sponsorship team has thought of different ways to engage businesses in donating by creating month long fundraising opportunities. Most of these events happened during ‘Miracle Month’ in February.”

    SDSU State-A-Thon has transformed this campus organization into a staple of the Brookings community. They have been able to facilitate very successful events at bowling alleys, pizza restaurants, Krispy Kreme, Taco Johns, ice cream shops, and many more local businesses. How? They go beyond pushing out a percentage night on social media; they give students a reason to be there. Whether it’s a chance to meet miracle kids, pre-register for the Big Event, and many things in-between. They understand the importance of cause connection and tying the mission into goals. They were able to raise thousands of dollars on their ‘Fundraising Push Day’ from local businesses because they activated them in a unique way. The businesses responded enthusiastically to being apart of special day that raised $33,000 for kids in their community. Plus they collaborated with a local a radio station to thank businesses on the air that day. Through their incredible year round engagement with businesses the Brookings City Council proclaimed April 2nd, 2016 as ‘State-A-Thon Day.’

    These programs continue to innovate and lead this movement. They understand the difference between sponsorship and partnership. They keep the mission as the focal point to their work and they never forget to thank who helped them along the way.

© 2017 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, a not-for-profit, section 501(c)(3)

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