Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Volunteerism

Name: Chalane Miller
From: Bloomington, Indiana
Votes: 0

It was late in the evening and time to reveal the total amount of
donations collected. The number $150,685.69 was displayed on the
billboard. The crowd went wild. Tears fell and shouts of joy filled
the auditorium when the student body realized they had surpassed the
previous year’s dollar amount.

I joined a committee called Dance Marathon when I became a high school
student in 2012. Committee members devote their spare time hosting
events to raise money for Riley Children’s Hospital in
Indianapolis, Indiana. The children who are patients at this hospital
are stricken with cancer or other serious life threatening illnesses;
the care they require is costly.

Personally, I devoted many hours fundraising, planning and staging events for the
hospital over the course of six months. Specifically, my role as a
member was to monitor all groups within the committee to ensure
everyone’s fundraising pages were active and the word was spreading
to the public about when and where our fundraising events were taking
place. I was also tasked with securing local restaurants to donate
and deliver food for the events.

The most challenging part of volunteering for this worthy cause was
juggling school, homework, sports, and all the unexpected things life
throws at you. Although stressful at times, accomplishing my
committee goals gave me a sense of satisfaction because I knew I was
making a positive impact on the lives of others. I can help myself,
but these children cannot; they need help. This is why I chose to
volunteer my time with Riley Children’s Hospital. Volunteering has
helped me perfect my time management skills and has given me a
different outlook on life. I am thankful I am healthy and am able to
enjoy the things life has to offer. Gratification comes from seeing
these patients who attend our events smiling and laughing proving all
the hard work was worth it. When the amount of money raised this year
exceeded that of the previous year, it gives me a sense of pride
knowing my efforts are not in vain.

Now that I have graduated high school, I cannot envision myself not
staying connected to Riley Children’s Hospital. I hope to continue
volunteering for this worthy cause becoming a member of the Dance
Marathon committee at Indiana University. Upon graduating Indiana
University, I plan to attend grad school and become a dentist. After
receiving my degree, I hope to offer my professional skills on the
weekends at the hospital by cleaning patients’ teeth and providing
them with the tools necessary to maintain healthy oral hygiene. My
goal is to make children enjoy the dentist and encourage the
recommended six month evaluation. Medical disorders can affect the
mouth causing tooth decay and bone loss, especially if the patient is
undergoing chemotherapy. Throughout my lifetime, I hope to create a
brighter future for those I come in contact with by promoting healthy
oral hygiene habits in the youth and thus decreasing the fear of
going to the dentist.

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