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Bee House is a Special Interest (SI) Organization devoted to fundraising for Penn State’s IFC/Pan-Hellenic Dance marathon. Known for having the largest, student-run philanthropy in theworld, Penn State has partnered with the Hershey Children’s Hospital to raise money for pediatric cancerthrough the Four Diamonds Fund. With all fundraising efforts culminating in a 46-hour dance marathon, affectionately known as THON, Bee House’s small, family oriented organization is making strides in their growing efforts “For The Kids.”
After living together on the Be Engaged House floor, a special living option, a small group of freshman students branched out and founded Bee House Special Interest Organization in the fall of 2009. Keeping their charitable mentality alongside a strikingly similar name, this group of students took on the task of running a SI Organization, going on soliciting trips, and ultimately dancing for the first time in THON 2010.
Over the years, Bee House has become a contender amongst other SI Organizations and has raised over $200K for the cause. Bee House’s hard work and dedication continues to grow. With inspiration from their THON families, the Waldenbergers and Sweger-Nesbits, the organization’s year round fundraising efforts keep them connected to their service and social justice roots.
Our most recent THON (2020) was an experience like no other., Bee House was awarded two dancers: Katie Luteran and Emily Pedano. For 46 hours these amazing Bee Housers buzzed around the floor of the BJC to show our support for our THON families and all of the families who have been affected by pediatric cancer.
In October of 2011, Bee House was privileged to be paired with the Jordan Lee Waldenbergers Family through the Adopt-A-Family program. When we first met Jordan, he was still undergoing intensive treatment for his Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Despite the adversities he was facing, he still had more energy than all of us combined! He is now six years cancer-free!!!! Woohoo!! We have had the opportunity towatch Jordan grow. From his favorite game of Roblox and theme song on repeat, our get-togethers with the family are always eventful; and usually involve a room full of balloons!
We are extremely grateful to have been given the chance to form a bond with such incredible people. Since we are a small organization, we have all had the opportunity to meet and form our own relationships with each member of the Waldenbergers family. Jordan’s parents, Brittany and John, fit perfectly with our organization. In February 2016, Jordan became a big brother to Anastasia. In August 2017, the Waldenbergers family became a party of five with the birth of their daughter, Maddison. We are so thankful that the Waldenbergers have been so warm, welcoming and willing to be a part of our Bee House family.
The Sweger-Nesbit Family
As of October 2016, through the adopt-a-family program Bee House has been paired with a second THON family!We have had the privilege of getting to know the William Sweger family over the past years. Some of William’s interests included: fishing, hunting and hockey.
William Sweger was diagnosed with Hypodiploid Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) in December of 2015. Since his ALL was hypodiploid, this lowered his survival rate from 90% to 35%. William’s sister was a 10/10 match for a stem cell transplant that took place in April 2016. Shortly after this transplant he was considered in maintenance and off treatment. William has been acknowledged as 2017’s Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Boy of the Year.
Unfortunately in January 2017 William relapsed. After a regular blood work check-up, Amy and Derek, William’s parents were told that William had relapsed. William was at Hershey Medical Center for chemotherapy and then the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to receive a consult on a trial therapy.
In July 2017 William, sadly, passed away after a long and hard fight with cancer. William was an incredible boy, who was funny and kind and most importantly loved his family very much. His memory was honored during the 2020 THON Weekend family hour. His mark on each and every one of us will not soon be forgotten.
Despite this tragic loss, Bee House continues to provide support and love to William's parents and four sisters, Sadie, Leyna, Aaliyah, and Denni. Through sports weekends, family picnics and Facetime calls, we love spending time with the Sweger-Nesbits. We have loved getting to the know the family and feel so lucky that they have become part of our Bee House Family.
Any donation is appreciated to aid us in our fight against cancer ~ FOR THE KIDS! Our inspiration for our efforts is driven by our 2 amazing THON families.