CHAMPAIGN — A University of Illinois student group donated over $180,000 to the university and area charities Wednesday evening.
Orange Krush, the student cheering section for the Fighting Illini men's basketball team, raises money annually for various organizations by seeking pledges from the community.
The bulk of the money raised goes to the Lou Henson Coaching Development Endowment Fund, which was established a few years ago to support young people, including graduate assistants and video coordinators, entering the coaching profession.
This year the group donated $90,000 to the fund, said Orange Krush chair Sam Shiner.
Representatives from different charities attended the annual check ceremony at the Colonnades Club in Memorial Stadium.
The second largest recipient this year was Cunningham Children's Home, which received a $10,000 check.
Organizations fill out grant applications at the beginning of the year and are notified in the fall.
"We try to give as much as we can to as many as we can. It's great to celebrate with them," Shiner said.
Not including the endowment fund, Orange Krush gave to 63 organizations, such as to Coaches for Cancer and Garden Hills Elementary School in Champaign, this year, Shiner said.
The Orange Krush dates back to 1975 and started raising money in 1998. In the last 13 years the group has raised more than $2 million.
The group has about 900 members, who must pledge to raise a certain amount of money based on how many 3-point-shots are made during the basketball season.
More information is available at illinipride.com.