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Children’s Miracle Network raised $470,000 for local use in 2013

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More than $470,000 worth of miracles happened in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties last year.

That’s how much money was raised from multiple events throughout the north country for Children’s Miracle Network of Northern New York at Samaritan Medical Center.

“We allocate 100 percent of the funds to the local area,” said Morgan O’Brien Bocciolatt, CMN development manager. “It’s exciting to be so successful.”

In 2013, the agency received two bequests that brought the final amount closer to the half a million mark, but there also was much support for annual CMN events, such as the radiothon that raised more than $150,000.

The agency’s first triathlon raised $18,000.

Some funds raised went toward equipment or services for children in local hospitals and health organizations, but much goes directly to families in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties who contact the local CMN affiliate for assistance with travel or medical expenses for their sick or injured child. Miss Bocciolatt said that in 2013, more than 40 families received assistance.

There are no income eligibility guidelines.

CMN is there for families as they go through the process of caring for their child ages birth to 18, or 21 if a dependent or in college, who has a medical crisis, she said.

“We want to be involved,” Miss Bocciolatt said.

The agency helps families with children who have developmental delays, birth defects, cancer and other ailments.

After CMN families receive assistance, they often continue that relationship and volunteer or participate in annual agency events, Miss Bocciolatt said.

“When they get really involved — and most do — it’s because they want to give back,” she said. “They want people to understand that CMN is real and it’s local.”

The next big event for CMN will be the annual New Visions class-hosted dance marathon at the end of next month.

Miss Bocciolatt said the fundraising goal for 2014 is pretty simple: raise more than in 2013. The community can help with that, she said, by purchasing a CMN paper balloon at a store or make a donation at participating businesses.

Anyone interested in helping CMN come up with new fundraising ideas or who wants to get involved can call Miss Bocciolatt at 785-4053.

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