Santa Barbara Hillel, along with a variety of campus organizations including the Greek Life Office and Associated Students, hosted an auction benefit night on Wednesday, Feb. 12, for Save A Child’s Heart (SACH). SACH is “an Israeli-based international humanitarian project that provides life-saving heart surgery and follow-up care for children from developing countries, regardless of their race, color, religion, gender, or financial situation,” according to the benefit’s Facebook event.
Raising approximately $2,500 to send directly to Save A Child’s Heart, the auction included prizes such as Disneyland Tickets, a Tiffany necklace, Beats by Dr. Dre, movie tickets and gift cards.
The venue was decorated with hearts, flowers, and candles, while the refreshment tables boasted an impressive spread of sweets. Between the bantering and swift talking of the auctioneers in action, guests were entertained by performances by Improvability, Naked Voices, and The Olé’s.
“The evening was well-organized and I really enjoyed the variety of entertainment acts, not to mention the amazing assortment of desserts,” said attendee Maeve Greenberg, third-year biopsychology major.
Danielle Freedman, a fourth-year global studies and film and media studies double major, organized the event. Freedman got involved with SACH through her experiences volunteering with the organization over the summer and studying abroad in Israel, where SACH has its headquarters. The Jewish value of Tikkun Olam, or “repairing the world,” is one of one of SACH’s leading principles.
According to Freedman, many students volunteer to get involved with Save A Child’s Heart.
“It’s a very well-known Israeli organization,” said Freedman. “I know how much the money really makes a difference. [UCSB] raising what we raised really does help.”
According to the Save a Child’s Heart website, the annual number of children treated by SACH has grown from 48 cases in 1996 to 298 in 2012. SACH has treated a total of more than 3,300 children from 48 different countries suffering from heart disease and has trained 88 medical personnel to improve the quality of pediatric cardiac care worldwide.
“For the vast majority of our patients, every penny of their medical costs are covered by SACH and its partners, from the moment a child comes under our care until they have fully recovered—even if they require a lifetime of check-ups,” said the Save A Child’s Heart’s media kit.
Freedman explained that though the debate on campus over “A Resolution To Divest From Companies that Profit From Apartheid” last year left some divisiveness among students, she was glad that many different people could come together to make the event a success.
“Something like this shows that politics don’t matter when it comes to saving children’s hearts,” said Freedman.