Registration is open through March 25 for Beads of Courage’s first annual Courage in Motion Dance-a-thon. The 10-hour fundraiser will be held April 2 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Bear Down Gym on the University of Arizona campus.

Beads of Courage seeks 12- to 18-year-olds who want to have fun and make a difference in the lives of children coping with cancer and other serious illness. Lizzie Bell, one of just 700 people in the world with Diamond Blackfan anemia, will serve as the first grand dance marshal. In her honor, a marrow donor registry drive will also be held at the event.

The Courage in Motion Dance-a-thon is open to teenagers who raise $60 or more in donations for Beads of Courage. It will feature themed music hours ranging from disco to country and western to hip hop.

Participants will receive T-shirts, snacks, refreshments, pizza and a swag bag. Prizes from Apple electronics will be awarded for money raised. These range from an Apple iPod Shuffle for $200 raised to an Apple iPad with 3G and 64GB for $2,000 raised. Prizes will also be awarded for most money raised and best costume.

Teenagers can register online, download fundraising forms and find more information at All donations are tax-deducible. Registration and donations must be submitted by March 25.

Sponsorships for the event are also available. For more information, call Pam Carnes at 904-2285.

The Beads of Courage Program was founded by University of Arizona graduate Jean Baruch. Through it, children receive colorful beads that symbolize the many different treatments and procedures they encounter while receiving treatment for a life-threatening medical condition. Each bead is a badge of honor that acknowledges each child’s courage.

Most children in the program have well over 500 beads, providing a powerful visible narrative of their treatment journey.

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