Great Prizes And a Good Cause Can Propel Your Raffle
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â€œImpact a Lifeâ€ Scholarship contributor: Joseph Bendekovic
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Kevin was easily one of the important players on our high school basketball team. Making the varsity team when he was a freshmen, they were conference champions two years in a row and clenched the regional trophy when he was a sophomore. His junior year, however, was looking to be not as triumphant. Due to medical concerns he was prohibited from any physical activity, and later was revealed that he needed a heart transplant. Not only did Kevinâ€™s future in basketball seem bleak, but affording a successful heart transplant filled him with even more dread.
When Birchwood High School found out about Kevinâ€™s situation, they kickstarted every fundraiser possible to help Kevin. Bake sales, sports tickets, t-shirt sales…and while they helped there was still a ways to go so that the school would feel satisfied with itâ€™s contribution to Kevin. So the school held a raffle, which werenâ€™t extremely common as they proved unsuccessful in the past. However, the combination of great prizes and a good cause helped this raffle to be much more successful than any previous ones. They announced the raffle during the morning announcements, mentioning many of the various prizes. The prizes included free tickets to sports events, gift cards to many of the studentsâ€™ favorite restaurants, free athletic wear, iPads, and plenty of other prizes. Tables selling tickets would be set up during all lunch shifts, allowing all students to get a chance to purchase a ticket. I volunteered to sell tickets during my lunch shifts along with a friend of mine. As soon as I sat down at the table, we were swarmed with students wanting to purchase tickets. Keeping track of the tickets we sold grew difficult, as a steady stream of students flowed through wanting to purchase them. At the end of the shift we were nearly drained of tickets, but luckily the next students came in to run the table for the next shift with extra ones. I left lunch content with all the money we had raised for Kevin.
The raffle continued for nearly three weeks, with tons of tickets sold at every shift. At the end of the raffle, the winners were announced during the afternoon announcements. We all waited eagerly to hear who won the most coveted prize, the new iPad 2. The final prize was announced…and the winner was Andrew Burt! All winners were to report to the library to collect their prize. While I bought some tickets, I unfortunately did not win any prizes. Kevinâ€™s transplant was scheduled in a week, and the school was proud with what they were able to contribute. After months of waiting his surgery, Kevin could finally afford his heart transplant.
Kevinâ€™s surgery took place on a Friday night, and many of my friends waited all night to hear the news of the transplant. I awoke Saturday morning to a multitude of text messages, proclaiming that Kevinâ€™s surgery was a success! Kevin had a new heart, and while he had to spend a lot of time recovering, he could probably play basketball next winter.
Kevinâ€™s raffle was one of the most positive and successful events held at the high school. It was one of the best moments of school unity that Iâ€™ve experienced, and after such a turbulent and divisive year, it was satisfying to see the school unite for a cause. Personally, I feel very proud to have participated in the effort to help Kevin and make sure he was healthy and safe. Thereâ€™s no doubt in my mind that the raffle definitely helped the most in raising money for Kevin.