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Thursday, October 06, 2022

Gators March for Babies raises $75,000

Gators March for Babies raised more than $75,000 at Sunday's 5K walk, about $10,000 more than last year's event raised.

The money will go to the March of Dimes, which raises money to combat premature births and fund research.

Participants began and ended the walk on Turlington Plaza. Spirit stations along the route provided food, drinks and gift bags. This is the walk's eighth year at UF.

About 1,400 people registered to walk, said Gators March for Babies Public Relations Director Blaire Hannon. She estimated about 700 people participated.

She said the number of teams was similar to last year's count of 200, but teams raised more money this year.

UF's College of Nursing was the top fundraiser with about $6,500 raised. This is the second year the College of Nursing has led in donations.

Top individual fundraiser and business senior Meagan Anderson, 20, estimates she will end with about $2,200 when fundraising ends Wednesday, which is what she raised last year.

As of press time, she had raised $2,035.

Anderson got involved with March of Dimes in high school as a member of Chain Reaction Youth Leadership Council.

She said touring the Shands at UF neonatal intensive care unit made a big impact.

"It just, like, hits home," she said. "You see these little babies who can't do anything laying there with more tubes in them than you would ever let be put in you."

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