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Glenbard North student plans ‘volunteer-a-thon’ fundraiser

Glendale Heights – A Glenbard North High School student plans to spend 24 hours volunteering in the emergency room at Adventist GlenOaks Hospital to raise money for medical equipment. Mike MacRae, a 17-year-old high school junior and Glendale Heights resident, plans to volunteer from 9 a.m. April 25 to 9 a.m. April 26 in what he hopes will become an annual “volunteer-a-thon.”

MacRae hopes to raise $30,000 to purchase new emergency room equipment. He is $50 closer to his goal after receiving a donation from Dr. Joe Lagattuta, a gastroenterologist who treats patients at Adventist GlenOaks Hospital. If MacRae surpasses his goal, he plans to donate the additional funds to the American Cancer Society.

A hospital volunteer for about a year, MacRae typically spends four to six hours every Saturday volunteering at the Shanahan Emergency and Trauma Center. His duties include taking specimens to the laboratory, transporting patients, cleaning patient rooms, and clerical duties such as answering phones and filing paperwork. He came up with the idea for volunteer-a-thon after a friend participated in a successful “dance-a-thon” fundraiser. He chose April 25 to commemorate National Volunteer Week 2009, which is recognized April 19-25.

“Spending 24 hours volunteering seemed like a fun way to raise money for the hospital,” said MacRae, who is promoting the event on his Facebook page.

When asked how he plans to stay awake during his marathon shift, he mentioned his favorite energy drink: Full Throttle by Coke.

Sally Frodin, manager of volunteer services, praised MacRae for his unselfish devotion to the hospital.

“Our community needs more young people like Mike,” Frodin said. “We are so proud of all of his efforts.”

To donate to the volunteer-a-thon or for information about volunteering at Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, call (630) 545-4992.