Fundraising for a Free Medical Clinic

Passing the halfway point working at Matthews Free Medical Clinic (MFMC) has been bittersweet. Being able to experience so much, yet knowing time is fleeting, has left me rather melancholy. In attempts to remain positive, I want to share a very impressionable moment along my journey thus far. As previously explained in my first blog entry, MFMC serves the uninsured and non-elderly (ages 14-64) individuals of Mecklenburg and Union Counties that have family income levels at or below 200% of the federal poverty level. As a free medical clinic, we do not receive reimbursements from private insurances, Medicare, or Medicaid, nor federal or local government funding. This means the Clinic is run 100% on donations and grants. Nearly half of our yearly revenue is raised through our two annual fundraisers: the MFMC Golf Tournament and the Hearts & Hands Benefit. On October 21st, 2017, at Myers Park Country Club, MFMC hosted the 9th Annual Hearts & Hands Benefit: a cocktail dinner complete with silent and live auctions. All proceeds raised provide direct patient care to people in our community that would otherwise go without.

The entire event was a complete success.  The 9th Annual Hearts & Hands Benefit brought in over $55,000 for the Clinic, $10,000 more than the previous year. In addition to assisting with the preparation and execution of the event, I also had the opportunity to create an animation video that was shown to attending guests and is now featured on the Matthews homepage (https://matthewsfmc.org <https://matthewsfmc.org/>). Being entrusted to represent both the Clinic and our patients with significant components of the night’s events was incredibly meaningful. Within the video, I illustrated the effect donations have on patients: $150 can provide 10 patients with flu shots, $600 can provide 1 year of care for a patient, and $1000 can provide 50 life-saving cancer screenings to patients. The $50,000 raised will have a profound impact on the expansion of services and access to care our Clinic can offer.

It is impossible to finish this blog entry without thanking my friends and fellow Davidson alumni for volunteering at the event. Andy Baay, Bruno Mourao, Elise Lankiewicz, and Holt Evans took the time out of their weekends to support MFMC. When I graduated Davidson, I was fearful I would lose connections to the people I met at school. Much to my surprise, connections have strengthened, new friendships have formed, and Davidson alumni continue to root for their fellow Wildcats.

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