CURE IUP, a chapter of the nonprofit organization CURE International, will host its first Fall Flannel Event on Nov. 3 in the Hadley Union Building (HUB) Ohio Room.
Festivities will take place from 5 to 7 p.m., featuring fall-themed activities for the university community.
There will be a $7 admission fee, which chapter president Lydia Nelson (senior, fashion) said goes directly to children who are being treated by CURE’s nonprofit hospital in Malawi, a country located in the Eastern region of Africa.
Some events include apple bobbing, pumpkin ring tossing and live music from local bands.
There will also be plenty of food.
Aside from the fall festivities, Nelson said there will be CURE activities that allow students to interact with the children at Malawi’s orthopedic center, such as the opportunity to make short, encouraging videos and/or paintings that will be sent directly to the kids.
“All in all, we want to bring together diverse students that will make a difference in a child’s life,” Nelson said. “We are a big family that not only supports each other, but supports the kids in third-world countries.”
Aside from hosting several events in the past, the organization raises funds for CURE’s programs by tabling, canning and recruiting.
“We also like to communicate with and support the kids in the hospital by making crafts, sending messages, videos and cards and praying for them,” Nelson said.
“We accept everyone no matter what religion, race or ethnicity.”
Service is not limited to campus.
The chapter has partnered with Amplify Church and Gamma Sigma Sigma for past events and has traveled abroad on behalf of the nonprofit.
During the summer of 2016, IUP’s chapter traveled to Zambia, which allowed members to help patients and to minister to nearby villages.
The chapter has opportunities to take a mission trip every summer, which Nelson described as a life-changing experience that helped strengthen her faith.
CURE International’s overall mission is to “heal the sick and proclaim the Kingdom of God.”
Its hospitals treat a vast array of severe conditions, including bowed legs, cleft lips, untreated burns or scars and hydrocephalus.
CURE even trains surgeons who enroll in its specialty programs like the CURE Hydrocephalus and Spina Bifida Program.
Nelson saw the event as a great opportunity to benefit its cause and raise awareness.
Nelson started CURE’s IUP chapter with her friend, IUP alumna Jessie Duca, in September, 2015, after Duca was inspired by a “random idea” to start an organization that would change lives.
“She told me about her idea and interestingly, that same day, CURE International followed her on Twitter,” Nelson said, “and she was hooked. “She told me all about it, and I instantly knew that CURE would be an awesome organization on campus.”
The club’s nonprofit organization, which is known for building Africa’s first orthopedic pediatric teaching hospital for children with disabilities, has 29 accredited university chapters in the United States and two in Pennsylvania.
CURE International was founded by Scott Harrison, a former surgeon and CEO, and his wife, Sally.
According to CURE.org, the Harrisons were invited to Malawi to teach on higher-level orthopedic surgery.
On arrival, the couple was moved by the “physical and spiritual” needs of the locals, and in 1996, they founded CURE to meet those needs.
Since its inception, the organization has built and operated 10 hospitals in 10 different areas, some of which include Afghanistan, Zambia and the Dominican Republic.
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