Dede D’Arcy: Join Us for the Adventure of a Lifetime

The News-Press Guest Editorial
Dede D’Arcy

Dede D'Arcy and Joanne Heroy-GillerI love adventure. On Sunday, October 22 I will enjoy the thrill of rappelling 19 stories from The Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village. But the thrill of the leap is nothing compared to the thrill of helping children from the Harlem Heights neighborhood of Fort Myers – an area with a poverty rate for children more than twice the county average.

As a long-time resident of Sanibel and now Shell Point Retirement Community, I consider these children and their families my neighbors. I am committed to help ensure the kids have the necessary support and tools to succeed in school. The Heights Foundation’s School Success Program’s afterschool and summer camp provide a safe and engaging place for kids to be when school is out. School supplies help equip kids with tangible tools, as well as the dignity of having what other kids have on the first day of school–backpacks, resources, and supplies. If we can contribute to the upward trajectory of these children through enhancing education, wellness activities, and positive mentoring, we can improve their lives and their families’ lives.

I invite you to check this off your bucket list. The first 80 people who raise $1,200 can join me and my teammate Joanne Heroy-Giller as well as local celebrities and rappel the 19 story tower in support of The Heights Center’s School Success Programs for at-risk kids in the Harlem Heights neighborhood. The fundraising minimum can be raised through any combination of donations. Online pages are available for registration to ensure safe and secure transactions.

The event is organized by Over The Edge USA, which provides the equipment and training for the participants, and meets all legal and insurance requirements. More than 25,000 people across North America have rappelled for charities, raising more than $60 million since 2008. No previous rappelling experience is necessary. Rope experts from area fire departments will be there to instruct and assist the rappellers.

Celebrities will rappel on Saturday, October 21. 80 participants who have raised a minimum of $1,200 will rappel on Sunday, October 22. Rappellers are invited to bring their friends and family to cheer them on. You can even come by boat!

To register or to donate to a rappeller visit or call (239) 482-7706.

Dede D’Arcy is the 2015 and 2016 top fundraiser for Over The Edge to benefit The Heights Foundation. Dede raised more than $22,000 in 2016 and she and her “Jazzy Jumper” teammate, Joanne Heroy-Giller, have raised more than $21,000 to date in 2017.