40 IU students skydive with teddy bears to raise money, awareness for Riley Hospital

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – This weekend, 40 students from Indiana University Dance Marathon (IUDM) took to the skies with teddy bears to raise awareness and funds for the patients at Riley Hospital for Children.

After falling 13,000 feet at 120 mph, each bear was declared the “Bravest Bear in the World,” and soon it will be given to the “Bravest Kid in the World,” a pediatric patient at Riley.

This was the fourth year IUDM students took to the skies with Skydive Indianapolis as part of their fundraising mission.

“As Co-Outreach Chairs for the Hospital Relations Committee, our goal is to raise awareness about IUDM and Riley,” said Lizzie Barker one of the event’s organizers. “We are the 2nd largest student-run philanthropy in the United States; last year alone we raised over $4.2 million for Riley. We need people to know that 75% of that goes to research, 25% to clinical care, and  100% of it is #FTK (For The Kids).

“Looking out of the door of the plane at 13,000 feet, knowing you are going to jump out is scary, but when you think about these kids are going through, it’s a lot scarier,” said Matt Arnold, another organizer of the event. “This program puts it all in perspective.”

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