Ohio University’s Project For The Kids (PFTK) will host its fourth annual fundraising fashion show on Saturday, March 1, in support of pediatric ailments and disorders.
Every year, the theme and organization that benefits from the fundraising changes. This year’s theme for the fashion show is “Welcome to the Jungle.” The organization chosen to donate to is the Beacon School, located in Athens, Ohio. The Beacon School serves students with various developmental disabilities.
PFTK strives to provide support for families with children who live with chronic illness and/or genetic conditions. The organization puts on events throughout the school year in an effort to help these children escape their harsh realities and connect with other children they can relate to.
“This is a great way to raise awareness for things that are often looked over,” Aleyna Dragonette, president of PFTK, said. “Our kids deserve the chance to be kids for a day.”
PFTK initiates preparation for the fashion show nearly a year in advance, first reserving Baker Ballroom and deciding what organization they want to contribute their fundraising efforts. Once school starts in the fall, the 25 active members split into their respective committees; marketing, planning, development, relations and scholarship.
The committees are responsible for advertising for the show, making T-shirt designs, creating a budget to submit to SAC for funding, reaching out to business’ for donations and deciding who will receive their annual scholarship. The scholarship is new to PFTK, which came into existence last year and allows any OU student affected by their cause to apply for it.
In order for everything to run smoothly and successfully, it takes every member’s utmost dedication and energy.
“We all work really well together, which is what makes us succeed as an organization,” Dragonette said. “We have a good amount of committed members who are a big part of the success.”
Children affected by PFTK’s causes will be modeling in the fashion show, walking the runway with members of the organization. There will be performances by the OU Sparkles and The Picardy Thirds, along with raffle baskets, food and guest speakers.
Laura Wentworth, early childhood instructor and adviser of PFTK, has experience working with high risk children in Belize. She sees a need for teacher candidates to work with and understand children with chronic illnesses.
“I came to recognize the importance of advocacy for children with medical conditions,” Wentworth said. “And supporting parents as they walk through life with their child.”
PFTK works year round to support pediatric ailments. They hope to see their organization grow over the coming years, spreading to other college campuses and positively impacting numerous communities.
“I would like to see the club continue on to grow,” Nathaniel Jerry, vice president of PFTK, said. “And become more involved with bobcat and Athens communities.”