The Haverhill Gazette
---- — When today’s adults were in school, many kids jumped rope.
If you had a bunch of friends at the playground at recess, girls mostly, you’d take turns swinging the rope and jumping for fun.
If there were only two of you, then you’d tie one end of the rope to something, maybe a railing, and take turns swinging and jumping. Shorter jump ropes allowed one kid to jump without any help.
It was good, old fashioned fun — nothing elaborate or expensive. And it didn’t amount to anything other than exercise and a stress break from class.
But today’s rope jumping can lead to big bucks. Just ask the students at Tilton Elementary School.
In the last 15 years, they have jumped rope to raise more than $113,000 for the fight against heart disease. (See story, Page 1.) They can be proud of their efforts. They deserve recognition from the community.
Led by physical education teacher Christine Munier who organizes the event, the children — 500 of them this year — got donations from relatives and friends and easily passed the school’s goal of raising $3,100. The kids collected $3,,800 in all.
That pushed the total past $13,000 for the 16 years Tilton has been involved in the Jump Rope for Heart event.
Everyone got in on the act, girls and boys alike. Their parents showed up at the school to cheer them on. This year’s version of the event was named for the parents of Munier, the gym teacher. Her father has experienced health problems involving his heart.
Jump Rope for Heart has become a community event, a tradition among Tilton families and members. The event adds different twists, such as jumping through using Hula Hoops.
The kids are showing how fun and relatively easy it can be to contribute to a worthwhile cause. Theirs is more than a token effort. It is effective, raising big money that is put to use for a good cause.
The kids are learning at a young age the importance of giving to help others.
As heart disease research progresses, one day we might even be able to call them life-savers.