Fundraising webpages repair Veishea aftermath



Sarah Ashby, former ISU student, created the webpage “$5 for ISU and Ames: Veishea Recovery” the day after the Veishea riot to raise funds for the family of the individual who was injured as well as to help those whose cars were flipped.

Danielle Ferguson

The echoes of the Veishea riot still ring throughout campus.

Sarah Ashby, former ISU student, said she was heartbroken to hear of what happened at Veishea and all the negative light the event was shedding on Iowa State.

The Tuesday night riot that resulted in cars flipped, light poles tipped and a student airlifted with a head injury caused the longstanding Iowa State tradition to be canceled in the middle of the week.

The student who was injured was sent to an intensive care unit in Des Moines. John McCarroll, with university relations, said the last update he had heard about the individual was that he was released from the hospital and returned home to continue recovery.

“It seemed like only negative things were coming out of this,” Ashby said. “This is my school. Ames is my home. The community doesn’t deserve that.”

So she did something about it.

Ashby created the webpage “$5 for ISU and Ames: Veishea Recovery” the day after the riot to raise funds for the family of the individual who was injured as well as to help those whose cars were flipped.

She said she created the website as a way to “give students a chance to redeem themselves.”

The page’s creation post states: “Donate $5.00 Towards Showing Everyone Who WE REALLY Are!”

Within hours, the page had hundreds of Facebook shares and had raised hundreds of dollars within a few hours. Within 12 hours, the page had raised about $3,000 from 274 contributors.

Ashby said the page has plateaued a bit at about $5,796, with the latest donation being $65 around April 26.

Ashby said she has been working with the city of Ames to make sure the money goes to the right people. She said she will create an account and give the rights to the city or “whoever has the authority to distribute that money fairly” and the bank will supervise the account.

“I just want to make sure it’s done the proper way and they have whoever has the authority to look at the insurance information of the people whose cars were damaged and determine their deductibles and look at their service records to see if their car was actually damaged when they say it was,” Ashby said.

This fundraising page was not the only one created from the aftermath of Veishea.

Chris Martin with Food at First decided to show appreciation for the students who worked hard to put Veishea together.

The page, entitled “Help ISU Clubs!” aims to raise money for Iowa State clubs that usually benefit from Veishea fundraising.

“With the cancellation of Veishea, so many Iowa State clubs that count on Veishea as their primary yearly fundraising effort won’t have the opportunity to raise money. This is an effort to help them out. Won’t you please consider a small donation to help these committed young people?” Martin wrote on the page.

Martin was unavailable for comment, but he wrote on the page that their intent is to split money between Iowa State clubs because Veishea is often some clubs’ largest fundraising opportunity.

Tom Fenton, vice chair of the board of directors at Food at First, said Food at First receives almost daily donations from different areas on campus, including Hawthorne, Parks Library and the Hub.

The organization would also receive donations from special occasions, such as Veishea, Fenton said.

Martin also wrote on the page that Food at First has received “a lot of donated food from cancelled events that didn’t happen because of Veishea.”

Fenton said many student groups are involved with Food at First.

“We get a lot of donations from Iowa State groups and I think [Martin] felt that, when Veishea was cancelled, it was going to hurt them financially, so he was thinking of ways we could help them,” Fenton said.

Fenton and his wife donated $100 to the cause.

Another donor, Alec Pendry, also donated $100, posting “These clubs shouldn’t have to suffer from the stupidity of others. Let’s help them out.”

Since its creation, 13 contributors have raised $565 in 20 days.

“It’s a way to show appreciation for what the students do,” Fenton said. “Especially because the students that worked hard at Veishea probably weren’t involved in the riots.”

Martin was unavailable for comment to say which clubs would be receiving the money.