APPLES service-learning course writing student promotes benefits of UNC-Duke rivalry for local nonprofit

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By Kacie Albert

(Chapel Hill News)

When I began my Writing for PR class at UNC this fall, I was bummed that I had to abandon my summer schedule of leisure.

I thought I would be working on my writing skills to produce quality written materials in fictional settings, which did not excite me. When I learned a component of my grade would require working for a local organization, BounceBack Kids, my excitement began to mount. I would actually be producing materials that would be used by a real entity.

I was excited because working with this organization would allow me to work within the realm of sport, my desired career field, which I had not been able to do in many of my general major classes. Despite my excitement I did not know much about BounceBack Kids outside of it being an organization that assists ill children through sports.

As my involvement progressed I discovered that BounceBack Kids not only raised money to provide free services to children with life-challenging illnesses, but that the money benefited their families and caregivers as well. This complete support provided by BounceBack Kids is unique. I know of few, if any, organizations who assist families within in a recreational environment like BounceBack Kids does.

Within BounceBack Kids I opted to work with the Duke-Carolina Student Basketball Marathon. While I picked the event solely based on the opportunity to produce pieces highlighting the Duke-Carolina rivalry, I came to recognize it as one of the most unique, exciting, and influential events that will take place at UNC this year.

The Duke-Carolina Student Basketball Marathon takes 28 teams of athletes from Duke and Carolina, who bitterly dislike one another, and puts them in a confined space for 15 hours competing in the highly contested sport of basketball.

Personally, I would never want to do that, and I do not know many people who would. However, this event makes you want to lace up your sneakers and be in tight quarters with Duke athletes for countless consecutive hours. While it may appear that the schools just want to beat one another both on the court and in the amount of funds raised, the event is very family friendly and works to highlight how Duke and Carolina students are able to set aside their storied rivalry in order to do good in the surrounding community.

BounceBack Kids, through the Duke-Carolina Student Basketball Marathon, is truly working to restore a rivalry to benefit a cause. Whether you are a die-hard Blue Devil, a Tar Heel born and bred, or somewhere in between, this event has something for you. Even if you don’t like basketball at all, you’re sure to enjoy the half-time show when the kids of BounceBack Kids, the beneficiaries of the event, perform!

This organization is doing great good in the community and this event is their prime fundraiser for the kids. I encourage you to come support the players, donate, or sponsor, every little bit helps!

The Duke-Carolina Student Basketball Marathon is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 17, from 9 a.m. until midnight in Rams Head Center and Plaza in the recreation center. All funds raised from the marathon will benefit BounceBack Kids. I hope to see you there!

http://www.chapelhillnews.com/2012/11/13/73740/rivalry-for-a-good-cause.html