Allison Wagoner // Contributing writer
Photo submitted by Love Your Melon
The words “Love Your Melon” might evoke mental images of a juicy summertime harvest, but this organization’s goal couldn’t be more perfect for the winter season. This semester, Love Your Melon – MTSU Crew became an official organization on campus, the mission of which is to sell and donate hats to raise money and bring a smile to every child battling cancer in the United States.
Love Your Melon was founded in Minnesota in 2012 by two college students at the University of St. Thomas. MTSU is now a part of an ambassador program through LYM along with over 200 other colleges. The crew at MTSU is made up of 17 students. LYM is a buy one/give one organization. All products are made in the U.S. The knit beanies and hats are made in Minnesota, and other ball caps are made by Competition Headwear in Denver, Colorado. For every item purchased online, a child battling cancer receives a hat. Half of the proceeds from all products sold go to LYM’s partners, CureSearch and the Pinky Swear Foundation. This year LYM gave over 45,000 hats to children with cancer in the U.S.
A few crew members had the opportunity to go on an adventure in Nashville with a 3-year-old little girl battling a terminal cancer. They were able to go horseback riding and fly in a helicopter to see Nashville from an aerial view. Through LYM, the little girl also got to meet her favorite country artist, Kacey Musgraves.
The crew was able to attend her birthday party this month. They promoted LYM by giving out wristbands and stickers and sharing about the organization to other party-goers.
The MTSU crew is excited to continue going on adventures with other children and help give them and their families fun memories together.
“This organization allows me to take a step back and appreciate helping others, whether it be simply donating a hat to a child battling cancer, or showing up to an event and making memories with new people. I also hope that one day, a cure for cancer is found, and every fall and winter, I will be able to wear, or see someone wearing, an LYM beanie and proudly say I played a small but pivotal role in spreading such an important message, which is searching for a cure to end Childhood Cancer,” MTSU’s Crew Captain, Kevin Donovan, said.
Rebecca Woods, another crew member, said she loves to help.
“It’s an amazing feeling to help these people through their journey in a small way,” Woods said. “Being around these families has taught me how to appreciate life, through the good and bad times. I could honestly write a book about how LYM has impacted me.”
MTSU’s crew holds the top spot of all the colleges in the Southern region that are participating with LYM. Once the crew meets its quota of selling 100 items on the website, they will be able to visit local hospitals to give hats to children with cancer. Love Your Melon’s goal right now is to raise $1 million for children battling cancer.
“Two major lessons I have learned would be to stay positive no matter how hard you think you have it someone has it worse, and to live life to the fullest and never take a day for granted because life is much too short,” said crew member Victoria Hart.
Visit loveyourmelon.com to purchase and select Middle Tennessee State University at checkout to support the campus crew and Love Your Melon.
For more campus organization news, follow us at www.mtsusidelines.com, on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on Twitter at @MTSUSidelines
To contact lifestyles editor Rhiannon Gilbert, email firstname.lastname@example.org