Serving on the board of Challenge 4 Charity is by far one of the most rewarding experiences I've had thus far at Haas. Challenge 4 Charity is the only club on campus in which everyone is a member. We have a number of initiatives coming up, including a March Madness bracket challenge, an annual spring auction, and the C4C Sports Weekend held on the Stanford campus.
Sports Weekend is a highlight of every Haas student's experience -- a culmination of lots of volunteering, lots of fundraising and lots of fun! This year, we've decided to implement a few new fundraisers. I'm especially excited about our newest fundraising program, which involves training for a half marathon while raising funds for charity!
A little bit of background information...
Each year, a consortium of top-notch business schools raises funds and contributes volunteer hours to benefit the Special Olympics through a friendly competition. The MBA Challenge for Charity (C4C) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that draws on the talents, energy, and resources of MBAs from nine West Coast business schools to support Special Olympics and family-related local charities, to develop business leaders with a lifelong commitment to community involvement and social responsibility. Since 1996, C4C has contributed over $5.8 million to the Special Olympics and other local charities, as well as donated tens of thousands of hours of community service. C4C today remains the World’s Largest MBA Non-Profit Organization.
The UC Berkeley, Haas Running Group and Haas C4C Chapter have partnered to raise money for this great cause. 20 runners are training for the US Half Marathon 2, held in San Francisco on April 8, 2012, in an effort to raise funds and awareness for C4C. Proceeds will benefit the Special Olympics and Alameda Point Collaborative of Oakland, California.
I'm excited about this idea because it combines two of my passions: running and fundraising. I adapted the C4C Half Marathon idea from Team in Training--an organization for whom I've run and fundraised in the past. The C4C team has just set up a website to collect donations and will be jogging, walking and running all over Berkeley over the next few weeks to prepare for the big race. The funds we'll raise as we train for the US Half Marathon 2 will facilitate free sports training and competitive events for children and adults with developmental disabilities. Because of our collective efforts, special needs athletes across the state will participate in aquatics, basketball, bocce, bowling, floor hockey, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field and volleyball free of charge. Through sports, Special Olympic athletes will develop physical skills as well as a powerful and resounding belief in themselves.
The idea of running a race to provide recreational outlets for special needs athletes really resonates with me and I hope we see lots of success with this fundraising endeavor. My dream would be to implement half marathon training/fundraising into our annual C4C fundraising agenda. I look forward to seeing what this season brings!
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