CHARLESTON (EIU) -- Eastern Illinois' women's basketball team recently held the inaugural CARE Game on February 24, as the Panthers closed out the regular season with a home win over SIUE. The EIU Women's Basketball CARE Game is a joint effort with EIU athletics, the local community, and schools to help and care for people who are fighting cancer in our area.
The event raised more than $10,000 which was donated to the Sarah Bush Lincoln Regional Cancer Center for the immediate needs of Cancer Center patients. In addition to raising funds and awareness, the event honored local cancer survivors with a reception and special seating during the game. Members of the EIU football team served as ushers for the survivors during the event.
The CARE Game was sponsored by Wave Graphics of Mattoon with additional support from First-Mid Illinois Bank & Trust, First Federal Savings and Loan Association, Odd Fellow-Rebekah Home, Kima Clean and Restoration, and several individuals.
Schools from Charleston and Mattoon also supported the event by conducting a "Penny DRIVE" in their individual classrooms. The students in each classroom personalized jugs to collect the money which were then displayed at the CARE Game. The schools involved in the drive included Ashmore Elementary, Carl Sandburg Elementary, Charleston Middle School, Mattoon Middle School, Riddle Elementary, and Williams Elementary. In all, 120 classrooms participated in the "Penny DRIVE" event. Ashmore Elementary was the top school raising more than $1,100 for the event with Meg Hebert's Kindergarten class leading the way with $393.01 raised.
EIU women's basketball looks forward to continuing this annual event and serving the community.