Dublin Villager

Emma's Walk

Fundraiser to help pay 7-year-old's medical expenses

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

With the school year nearing the end, most high school students are dreaming of summer vacation.

Jerome High School freshmen Brady Ellis and Caroline Schwarz are spending their time thinking up ways to raise $10,000 to help a Dublin 7-year-old walk.

The Jerome High School students are leading a May 4 effort to raise money for Riverside Elementary School first-grader Emma Dickman, a daughter of two Dublin City School employees. Dickman has cerebral palsy and can't walk.

She's set to have surgery in St. Louis this summer that could get her taking her first steps.

"For me it started in the PAC group selected by (Jerome Principal Cathy) Sankey," Ellis said. "She brings us problems facing the schools."

The PAC group, or Principal's Advisory Council, includes students from each grade with various interests. Sankey took Dickman's surgery and therapy before the students to gather ideas for a charitable effort to benefit the family.

"She showed us a video of Emma," Schwarz said. "We saw the video and the PAC was very excited."

Teachers at the high school had been doing small fundraisers to help the family, but Schwarz said she wanted to make a big impact on anticipated medical bills and therapy.

"We wanted a big thing for the whole community to get involved in," she said.

The group came up with a fundraiser, Emma's Walk, and Schwarz and Ellis took the lead.

Emma's Walk, slated for 11 a.m.-3 p.m. May 4 at Jerome High School, 8300 Hyland Croy Road, will include laps around the Jerome track, food, games and other activities.

"It's a great opportunity for the community to get involved," Ellis said.

The duo is also working to get other students at the high school involved.

"We're trying to get clubs and PAC to organize games and activities," Schwarz said.

Student musicians are being asked to join the fundraiser, she said, and groups such as the art club are being asked to paint faces. Kickball, a cake walk, a disc jockey, basket raffle and pie throwing at teachers is planned.

"The vice principal at Karrer (Middle School) volunteered for that," Schwarz said of the booth that will let students throw pies at teachers and administrators.

T-shirts are also being sold for $10 to support the effort and donations will be taken at the May 4 event.

Money raised in excess of $10,000 will go to the Dublin Special Olympics program. Ellis said the event might return next year to help the new Dublin program.

"Eventually we're hoping to support the Special Olympics," he said.

"But we're going to see how this goes first," Schwarz added.

For more information about Dickman and her quest to walk, search for "Emma's Greatest Dream" on Facebook.

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