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Jailbirds raise money for March of Dimes

Posted: Friday, Jul 18th, 2014

On July 10 the March of Dimes held their annual Jail Ní Bail event in Huron at the Plainís from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The South Dakota chapter of the March of Dimes organization holds eight different Jail Ní Bail events throughout South Dakota every year. The Jail Ní Bail event raises money through people who volunteer to turn themselves into ďjailĒ until their chosen bail amount has been met. The volunteers call family, friends and businesses to raise the amount of money needed to ďbailĒ them out of jail. Those who donated could do so online, or they could fill out pledge cards at the event.

This year, 30 volunteers participated in Huronís Jail Ní Bail event with 10 more volunteers participating from their homes. South Dakota March of Dimes Office community director, Valerie Wilson, said the event raised approximately $8,000. She said the amount is slightly down from last year, but is still considerably more than was raised two years ago.

The March of Dimes uses donations to fund research to prevent premature births, birth defects and infant mortality. Wilson said that last year 12,104 babies were born in South Dakota. Out of those babies, 1,294 were born prematurely.

ďIf people look into their history, everyone has probably had someone born prematurely within their family,Ē Wilson said.

A premature birth is considered to be anything before or at 36 weeks. Wilson also said that 370 of the infants born last year in South Dakota had a birth defect.

Seventy-six percent of the money that was raised by the Jail Ní Bail event will stay within the state and will be used to fund and develop different programs, including the administration of four tests that screen newborns for inherited disorders.

The March of Dimes was founded in 1938 and has been in South Dakota since the early 1950s. It was originally founded to create a cure for polio, which it succeeded in doing. Since then, the organization has sought to improve the health of babies through research, education and advocacy.

Those who werenít able to participate in the Jail Ní Bail but would still like to help raise money for the March of Dimes can donate online at marchofdimes.com.

For the complete article see the 07-17-2014 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 07-17-2014 paper.

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