Natalie Conley- DanceBlue 2017
Organized by: Natalie Conley
EVENT DATE Jan 31, 2017
For those of you who are unaware, I have a fierce passion for children and for pediatric healthcare. I truly believe that God wrote it on my heart from the beginning that I would find my passion in pursuing a life that would benefit children. I came to UK hoping to go to pharmacy school but was completely unaware of how the next 3 years would change my path and how some pretty awesome, tiny humans would alter my life. DanceBlue and Kids Cancer Alliance have changed me forever.
"It is the mission of the University of Kentucky 24 Hour Dance Marathon, DanceBlue, to create a multi-faceted organization that operates through the support and leadership of the UK students, faculty, staff, administrators, and the Lexington community. The organization enhances the lives of children and families fighting childhood cancer through the Golden Matrix Fund, and therefore serves the Bluegrass by assisting those treated at the DanceBlue Clinic. Furthermore, DanceBlue strives to establish a continued tradition, invoke appreciation and involvement, and ultimately create something greater than oneself."
After dancing in the marathon as a freshman and spending the next two years on committee helping to plan the marathon, I was a completely different person. Those 24 hours are the most exhausting yet rewarding hours I have ever experienced. Until you meet a child in the clinic or one of their family members, it is hard to put into words what this experience means. I was further changed after spending the past two summers as a counselor at Kids Cancer Alliance's Indian Summer Camp, a camp that allows pediatric cancer patients and survivors as well as their siblings to enjoy a week of pure fun without worry of their illness. I have personally seen how much this week changes them, allowing them to grow in confidence and spend an entire week with a smile across their face.
As I pursue my PharmD, I continue to work towards my dream of becoming a pediatric pharmacist with the hope of maybe specializing in oncology. This year I will once again be taking the dance floor with my classmates from UK College of Pharmacy but to do that I need your help! No donation is too small as it all goes to this AMAZING cause that captured my heart in 2013. These kids mean the absolute world to me and they continue to inspire me every single day. I would not be where I am today without DanceBlue and I can't wait to see more hearts get changed on the floor this year. FTK forever and always! Thank you all SO much!