Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green ran 67 miles overnight and raised $17,052 for World Bicycle Relief.
Crazy, right? Here’s how they did it.
Dale Augenstein, owner of Steamer Seafood, a WKU and SAE alum and longtime supporter of World Bicycle Relief, wanted to do more than donate a few bikes every year. He hoped to involve his fraternity, to whom he’s an adviser, while teaching philanthropy, fundraising and global need.
He partnered with his longtime friend and WBR fundraiser Tom Renaud and used the fundraising event, One Day 100 Bikes, as the catalyst for an amazing grassroots initiative the fraternity came up with on their own.
SAE’s wanted to raise enough to provide 100 bikes for students in rural Africa. But Dale left it up to the SAE members to figure out the “what and how.” The group decided to revive an old philanthropic tradition that started 50 years ago but had been dormant for more 15 years.
On Nov. 3, 2017, the day before the WKU vs. Vanderbilt football game, more than 20 members of SAE ran a football 67 miles from WKU’s Houchens Smith Stadium to Vanderbilt Stadium in Nashville.
“Run So They Can Ride” took 9 hours and 17 minutes. “Running over a long distance over a long period of time gave us an idea of what it’s like everyday for these kids in so many underprivileged countries in Africa. Many have to walk two hours just to get to school,” said SAE philanthropy Chair Joe Webb.
On Feb. 22, the brothers of SAE, along with Dale Augenstein, presented a check for the $17,052 to Tom Renaud during a WKU basketball game. “We are honored to do this for such a great organization, and plan to make this an annual event here at WKU” said Clay Groce, SAE Chapter President.
When hearing what SAE accomplished, the home crowd gave a standing ovation for their efforts. We do too! Well done, SAE!
Do you have an idea for a fundraiser to help bring bicycles to students, healthcare workers and entrepreneurs in need?