Support for Friends of Children’s Hospital reached new heights at the Sixth Annual Over the Edge with Friends fundraiser on April 23, when the event raised $101,440 for the state’s only children’s hospital.
Held at the District at Eastover, the family-friendly event featured food, music and the main attraction–more than 54 participants rappelling down the five-story One Eastover Center building. Among those making the jaw-dropping descent were Mississippi’s university cheerleaders and mascots, including Seymour from Southern Miss, Bully from Mississippi State and Sonny Thee Tiger from Jackson State, as well as two Ole Miss spirit squad members.
“Thank you to everyone who supported Friends of Children’s Hospital at Over the Edge with Friends,” said Rochelle Hicks, Friends executive director. “The outpouring of community support we received was incredible and a testament to the immeasurable generosity of our participants and donors. On behalf of all of Mississippi’s sick and injured children, we offer our most heartfelt thanks.”
“Batson Children’s Hospital has a special place in my heart,” said Over the Edge with Friends participant Lisa Kent, whose three-year-old son Peter had a 35-day NICU stay in 2018 for multiple disabilities caused by childbirth complications and infant son Zach stayed in the Sanderson Tower NICU for four days in 2021 for jaundice. “Peter is a frequent flier within the hospital system, having multiple hospital stays and appointments on a regular basis, and Zach has returned to the ER once for RSV and is a pediatric patient within the Children’s of Mississippi system,” she said.
At this year’s event, Kent, who is admittedly afraid of heights, continued the tradition started by her late husband Rob, who died at UMMC in January after a two-year battle with cancer, and rappelled five stories down in honor of her husband and as a way of saying “thanks” to hospital system for all that it has done over the years for her family.
“I regularly say the children’s hospital is the family I never wanted to have but that I am sure glad I do,” she said. “It was important to me to continue Rob’s legacy of giving, including doing this event on his behalf.”
In addition to the many selfless “Edgers” and donors like Kent, Friends would like to extend its sincerest appreciation to all of the event’s presenting sponsors, without whom this event would not be possible – Bank Plus, Paul Moak Subaru, and Trustmark Bank. They would also like to thank the Silver Sponsors, Steel Dynamics Columbus and the District at Eastover.
Participants in Over the Edge with Friends raised a minimum of $1,000, and “Toss Your Boss” campaign participants raised at least $2,500–guaranteeing that a boss or co-worker would venture “over the edge” for a great cause. Every dollar raised at Over the Edge with Friends helps provide vitally important healthcare treatment and support to the 180,000 children treated at Children’s of Mississippi each year.
For more information about Over the Edge with Friends, visit www.overtheedgewithfriends.com, call 601-936-0034 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Friends of Children’s Hospital, founded in 1989 by a group of dedicated volunteers from across the state, supports Mississippi’s only children’s hospital by driving fundraising, growing voluntarism and building awareness. Since its inception more than 30 years ago, the nonprofit organization has raised nearly $20 million to purchase state-of-the-art equipment, construct new facilities and provide vitally important services for all pediatric patients. For more information about Friends of Children’s Hospital, please visit www.friendsofch.org or email email@example.com.