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Achy Breaky Heart fundraises for kids with heart problems, HIV/AIDS

Third-year communication studies student Sophia Jane Wilkof sings with her JEWkbox singing group at the Achy Breaky Heart fundraiser. (Owen Emerson/Daily Bruin)

By Daily Bruin Staff

Feb. 20, 2015 3:10 a.m.

Pop music played through speakers and students mingled and danced in Pauley Pavilion Club Thursday night as Bruins for Israel and GlobeMed partnered to host the fourth annual Achy Breaky Heart fundraiser.

Neaha Lakshmanan, GlobeMed campaign coordinator, said the fundraiser raised roughly $2,500 for the humanitarian organizations Save a Child’s Heart and Mpoma Community HIV/AIDS Initiative, both of which aim to provide medical services in developing countries. The event was GlobeMed’s biggest fundraiser of the year, said Lakshmanan, a third-year microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics student.

For a $5 suggested donation, attendees entered the fundraiser and enjoyed a Valentine’s Day-themed party featuring dance, music, carnival games, pizza, doughnuts, frozen coffee and temporary henna tattoos.

Student groups JEWkbox, Synthesis Dance Theater and Random Voices A Cappella performed musical numbers as students chatted at tables decorated with hearts and flowers.

Keeping with the Valentine’s theme, an auction allowed participants to bid on dates with eligible bachelors and bachelorettes, including University of California Student Regent-Designate Avi Oved and Undergraduate Students Association Council General Representative 2 Sofia Moreno Haq. The proceeds for the auction went toward the fundraising goal.

Numerous booths were also set up in the Club, including one by GlobeMed where attendees could purchase bags and jewelry as part of the fundraiser. Another was a booth for the study abroad program Masa Israel Journey to recruit possible participants.

Members of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Pi sorority, including second-year psychology student Woo Jung Kim, volunteered at the event to earn standards of excellence points for their sorority. The fundraiser was staffed by volunteers to help cut down costs, Kim said.

Westwood stores donated funds to cover most of the costs of the event, which took about $1,500 to put on. The hosting groups paid out of pocket for food, said third-year neuroscience student and Bruins for Israel Vice President Omer Hit.

Compiled by Chris Campbell, Bruin senior staff.

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