Get Involved: College Students Raise Money For Haiti

Jan 29, 2010

Last week, Stanford and Partners in Health (PIH) launched a national college fundraising competition for Haiti. With Dartmouth leading the pack, the effort has raised over $200,000 in 10 days.

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Students Take Action

On January 12, a horrific 7.0 magnitude earthquake slammed Haiti. Groups around the world have rallied to provide food, supplies and on-the-ground support - including American college students. A week after the quake hit, the Associated Students of Stanford University (ASSU) joined with Partners in Health (PIH) to launch a national college fundraising challenge. By making it a competition, the ASSU hoped to raise awareness and motivate students to take action. Their efforts have been a resounding success, with over 20 participating schools plus the campus-based FACE AIDS project raising over $200,000 and counting.

Dartmouth Raises Funds for Haiti

From the ASSU College Haiti Earthquake Fundraising Challenge stats page, as of Friday, January 29

Although the challenge isn't over yet, the clear winner appears to be the group Students at Dartmouth for Haiti Relief (SDHR). They started with a goal of $100,000 and had such success that they've bumped the amount up twice. As their challenge meter above shows, the group has raised over $175,000 - and that's before their upcoming benefit concert. This Sunday, SDHR is hosting 'Compàs: The Haiti Relief Benefit,' featuring Haitian music and student performances, an event that promises to add another big boost to their fundraising efforts.

Dartmouth's success has largely come from their advanced fundraising model, which mobilized hundreds of campus and community volunteers managed by eight focused committees. The SDHR group was started by student body president Frances Vernon and two other seniors, Maura Cass and Alexandra Schindler, who credit Dartmouth President Jim Yong Kim as their inspiration. Kim co-founded PIH, and has helped the student campaign through national calls for support.

PIH Disaster Relief Efforts in Haiti

From the PIH Haiti relief Flickr set

Partners in Health was founded in 1987 to provide medical care for poor communities around the globe. The group currently operates in ten countries and has nine hospitals in Haiti in addition to their earthquake emergency triage center.

Students who want to get involved with the national college fundraising challenge can still start a chapter at their own school. The ASSU has made it easy to sign up for an account, set up a personal fundraising page and get the word out to your cohort. You can even show your school pride by displaying your progress on their stats page, which also has the instructions for starting your own campaign.

Currently participating colleges, universities and student groups as of press time include:

School or Group Name Current Total
Dartmouth $175,423
FACE AIDS $51,700
Caltech $8,001
Brown $6,660
Washington University in St. Louis $6,443
Stanford $4,077
RISD $2,970
Northwestern $2,845
University of Houston $1,835
UIC Medical $1,490
Rhodes College $1,365
UC Berkeley $1,130
Portland State University $900
UCSF $866
Vanderbilt $810
Rice $710
ERAU $670
Westminster $648
Ohio University $400
Duke $300
Whitman $190
CU Boulder $100
USC $65
University of Rochester $40
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