WishMakers auction aims to help kids with life-threatening diseases

With over $900 made from the third annual date auction, the University of Miami WishMakers, a student-led foundation partnered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, hopes to fulfill the dream of a child with a life-threatening disease.

At the Lakeside Patio Wednesday night, audience members bid on 17 different students for a date with their choice, with the proceeds being donated to charity. Hosted and emceed by the UM WishMakers president Chris Dalton and freshman representative Alicia Ortiz, this was the foundations first event of the year. They eventually put themselves up for auction at the end of the event and received bids of $25 and $40 respectively.

“All money goes toward granting a wish. Last year, we managed to send a child to Disney World,” Ortiz said.

The auctionees looked presentable and had witty bio descriptions that they thought of to demand the highest bids. Aiding them was a talent that they performed to entice the crowd. Talents included jokes, shirtless dancing and playing the violin. Talia Weintraub showed off her memory skills by reciting over 30 digits of pi, which proved to be a hit for the audience as she received the highest bid of $210.

Games were played within the audience as well, where the hosts got three volunteers to play “The Oreo Game,” in which participants had an Oreo placed on their forehead and had to eat the cookie without using their hands by scrunching their face. Volunteers also played musical chairs, and winners earned boxes of pizza.

With the first event of the year earning over a third of the desired goal, the student-led foundation was pleased with its progress. The aim is to raise $2,500 by May, the end of the school year. The proceedings will go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Apart from the auction, there have been bake sales throughout the semester and at the event itself to raise extra funds. They plan to have a Zumba event as well next week.

Since its inception in April of 2009, the UM WishMakers seek to raise awareness of the Make-A-Wish-Foundation. Following the foundation’s method, the student organization selects a child from South Florida with a life-threatening disease and does what it can to raise funds through unique, innovative events that will help make the child’s dream come true.