Raider Aid Raises more than $5,000 for Hurricane Relief

September 18, 2017

Phi Tau VolunteersALLIANCE, Ohio - On Friday, more than 150 University of Mount Union students lined businesses throughout Alliance and hosted an on-campus rally to support hurricane relief efforts.

The approach, dubbed "Raider Aid: Operation Purple" raised funds for those recently impacted by hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Mount Union’s radio station, WRMU sparked student interest when their organization pledged $500 to the American Red Cross. From there, 12 students spent time working with the Regula Center for Public Service and Civic Engagement to plan the day’s events.

In addition to the day of collections around town, Chives Bar and Grille held promotions on Thursday and Robertson Heating and Supply hosted internal events to support the cause.

Students organizing the event included, Parker Peterson, Logan McGee, Kelby Smith, Karlie Sustersic, Jacob Vanderkar, Cody Rohaley, Kimmy Lessick, Chris Campbell, Brandon Lucas, Madison Filipiak and Brad Hagerich. They took to social media encouraging student participation and called local businesses to garner support.

“I did this because I felt a duty to give back to those affected by the hurricanes. The effects were devastating and I felt a need to do something for those people,” Lessick said. “They are someone’s parents, children, relatives, friends, loved ones, I needed to do this for them.”

Organizing GroupVolunteers were stationed at 16 locations including, Sunbeam Tanning, Papa Gyros, Euro Gyro, Buffalo Wild Wings, Alliance Ventures, College Inn, Family Farm and Home, UPS Store, Frank’s Family Restaurant, Doug’s Diner, the Alliance Family YMCA, Chives and Bob Evans.

Each location featured buckets that were sold at cost to the Regula Center from Lowe’s and Family Farm and Home along with signage provided by the Alliance UPS Store. Employees at Robertson Heating and Supply supported the efforts and Alliance Ventures was helpful in planning the day.

“It’s amazing that in less than a week a small group of people were able to pull this event together, engage other students and the community – all for a great cause.” said Filipiak. “The amount of support and participation really shows what Mount Union is all about.”

The on-campus portion of the day featured a parking lot rally to encourage student donations. Frank Minear from Frank’s Family Restaurant donated the use of his concession trailer and secured donations of food from Green Farms, Pepsi and Gordon Food Service. Along with the food, other rally features include raffle prizes from the Green Raiders (a sustainability focused organization on campus), t-shirt sales from the women’s lacrosse team and a live remote from WRMU.

The students and community members raised over $5,000 to be donated the American Red Cross.

“It is great to see students become passionate about a cause and have the entire Alliance community support them,” said Abby Honaker Schroeder, director of the Regula Center. “Helping provide students with guidance and watching them make this event happen with less than two weeks of planning time is something that makes me incredibly proud.”

“Being able to give back is something that is extremely important to me. By assisting with Raider Aid, I was able to do my part in helping to better the lives of those affected by the hurricanes,” said Peterson. “We were able to bring the entire Alliance community together for a very important cause.”

Anyone wishing to make additional contributions or learn more about student projects should contact the Regula Center at (330)829-8168.

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