DePauw senior Hannah Clingan will put on a Latin-inspired dance fitness event benefiting the Riley Hospital for Children on Tuesday, April 24 at the DePauw Lilly Fitness Center.
"Move for Miracles" runs from 4:30-7:30 p.m., with a donation of $5 at the door. Come dressed to sweat.
At the event Clingan will teach Zumba classes and share fitness and wellness information.
"This is something that I'm truly passionate about," she said. "This is something that I want to do with my life."
Clingan, a psychology major, was recently named Miss Central Indiana. In June she will compete against 31 other regional champions and try to become Miss Indiana. For now she is focused on volunteering her time and energy to help kids.
"I'm nervous," Clingan said, "I just want it to be successful and for people to come in and have a good time."
Success, she said, would be to raise at least $500 to help fund research, equipment and health care. She is hoping to double the participants from her classes, usually 30-40 DePauw students.
Clingan wants more community members, and more males, to dance with her, try Zumba for the first time and help her with her cause.
She said she is in a special position to put on a fundraiser for Riley Children's Hospital.
"You gain authority to speak on the behalf of a cause when you experience it internally," Clingan said. "I gained empathy for those children by seeing them in the hospital with my niece."
A few years ago her niece, Reis, then 3, was hospitalized for hemolytic-uremic syndrome.
HUS primarily affects kids and causes anemia, kidney failure and a low platelet count. Reis was in and out of the hospital for months but has since recovered.
The idea to use her Zumba class to help raise money for kids came to her soon after, but she was reluctant.
"I wanted to put this fundraiser on when I started teaching fitness classes three years ago," she said. "But I didn't really have the courage to get up there and do it until I was a senior."
She has been participating in fundraisers for more than a decade, beginning by jumping rope in elementary school, but this will be her first time as host.
"Move for Miracles" will be similar to one of her regular Zumba classes, she said, but extended from one hour to three. She also hopes other local Zumba instructors will be there to teach different steps and routines.
While Clingan has danced in various styles since age 4, teaching Zumba has been a whole other animal.
"You have to just kind of let your guard down," Clingan said. "You can't really care what people think and just have fun with it."
Donations can also be made to the Children's Miracle Network through Clingan's page: www.missamerica4kids.org.