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Red Cross Youth Council Presents Dance-A-Thon 2008
High School Students Can Register Online at www.njredcross.org

Date: March 6, 2008
Contact: Diane Concannon, Public Relations Director 609.951.2116; (cell) 609.206.4043
concannond@njredcross.org

PRINCETON, NJ, March 6, 2008 – The American Red Cross of Central New Jersey’s Youth Council will be holding its third annual Dance-a-thon on Saturday, April 12, 2008 from 4:30-11:00 p.m. at South Brunswick High School. Students from high schools throughout Central New Jersey will be dancing to raise funds to support the local Red Cross chapter and the Measles Initiative. Last year’s Dance-a-thon raised nearly $20,000. “The Dance-a-thon is a tangible way for teenagers to join a cause larger than themselves,” said Aubrey Yarbrough, Youth and Volunteer Administrator for the American Red Cross of Central New Jersey. “There is a direct correlation between the dollars they raise and the number of children immunized against measles, their effort and the local Red Cross’ ability to keep our community safe. These teens want to make a difference in the world and they have created a program through which they can affect change.”

Local Red Cross services that will benefit include response to local disasters, meals delivered to the elderly and homebound, emergency preparedness education, and lifesaving health and safety training. Funds will also benefit Measles Initiative, a partnership committed to reducing measles deaths worldwide.

Students receive community service hours for their participation in the Dance-a-thon. DJs from Round The Clock Entertainment (www.rtcdj.com) will provide the music and there will be free food for the dancers and prizes awarded, including an iPod Touch. To register or learn more about Dance-a-thon 2008, visit www.njredcross.org.

About the American Red Cross of Central New Jersey (www.njredcross.org)
The Central New Jersey Chapter serves the people of Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon and parts of Somerset counties, helping our community prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. Last year, 1,229 volunteers and 25 full or part-time employees helped the victims of 132 fires, floods and other disasters in Central New Jersey; trained 55,562 residents with First Aid, CPR or other lifesaving skills; delivered 45,456 nutritious meals to homebound and elderly; and provided care and support to 196 military families. Central New Jersey residents donated 14,647 pints of blood through the American Red Princeton Blood Donor Center or American Red Cross blood drives throughout our service area. The Red Cross is not a government agency; it relies on donations of time, money, and blood to do its work. For more information on the programs and services of the Red Cross and to learn how you can get involved, visit www.njredcross.org or call 609-951-8550.

About the Measles Initiative (www.measlesinitiative.org)
The Measles Initiative, launched in 2001, is a long-term commitment and partnership among leaders in public health and supports the goal of reducing measles deaths globally by 90% by 2010 compared to 2000 estimates. Measles Initiative partners include the American Red Cross, UN Foundation, CDC, World Health Organization, and UNICEF.
Largely due to the technical and financial support of the Measles Initiative and the commitment from African governments, 217 million children have been vaccinated against measles and 1.2 million lives have been saved since 1999. Building on this achievement, in 2005, the Initiative has expanded its technical and financial support to countries in Asia, where total measles deaths are highest outside of sub-Saharan Africa.
Since 2001, the Measles Initiative has mobilized more than $200 million and supported more than 40 African countries and three Asian countries in implementing high-quality measles vaccination campaigns. As a result, global measles deaths have dropped by 48% from 871,000 in 1999 to an estimated 454,000 in 2004 thanks to improvements in routing and supplementary immunization activities. The largest reduction occurred in Africa, the region with the highest burden of the disease, where estimated measles cases and deaths dropped by 60%.

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www.njredcross.org

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