Category Archives: Charity

What Do You Run For?

I run for a lot of reasons, but maybe the most important is so that children in Africa can have access to clean water. Will you support me and my team while we raise money for a water well.

Saucony Helps Local School

Saucony

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The Saucony Run for Good Foundation, established to help combat childhood obesity by providing financial support to community-based youth running programs, has announced its latest round of grant winners. The eight grants include a biannual award presented in the name of 2008 Olympic sprinter and Saucony athlete Wallace Spearmon, Jr., to support track and field programs benefiting at-risk youth. The Wallace Spearmon, Jr. grant was awarded to the Boys and Girls Club of Boston, Massachusetts to support the launch of ten running programs in three urban neighborhoods in Boston.

“Reversing the childhood obesity epidemic will take everyone, communities, schools, families and businesses, working together,” said Richie Woodworth, president of the Saucony Run For Good Foundation Board of Directors and Saucony, Inc. “At the heart of the Saucony brand is our mission: to inspire others to run. We have a passionate belief in the transformative power of running for everyone, including kids. Addressing the issues facing the health of our children through the Saucony Run For Good Foundation represents a fusion of our mission and our commitment to social responsibility,” added Woodworth.

Since the Foundation launched in 2006, it has invested nearly $700,000 in grants to 80 organizations nationwide?all dedicated to promoting the sport of running as a part of a healthy, active lifestyle.

“Changing unhealthy behaviors, including eating too much and exercising too little, cannot be accomplished by our kids on their own,” said Susan K. Hartman, associate publisher of Runner’s World magazine and a member of the Saucony Run For Good Board of Directors. “Hopefully, each of these grants is a small victory in the fight against this growing epidemic, creating greater access and opportunities for more kids to live healthier lives,” she added.

Childhood obesity has increased over 300% in the past 30 years according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control). Obesity among children aged 6 to 11 years increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008. Obesity among adolescents aged 12 to 19 years increased from 5.0% to 18.1% during the same time period.

The recipients of the latest round of grant winners range from new running clubs to community developmental organizations, which all have a common goal: to promote running as a critical part of healthy lifestyles among children.

Six years ago, Bryan Sorensen started the Run Club in the Anoka-Hennepin School District, hoping to teach kids the importance of good nutrition, how to be properly hydrated, how valuable life-long activity is and that running can be fun. This club has goals in the future of increasing the number of students who participate in Run Club at both Oxbow Creek and Champlin Brooklyn Park Academy as well as exposing more kids to running at an earlier age. With this grant, Bryan hopes to make this program available for all students regardless of their family’s current financial position.

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My Run: The Documentary

The award-winning and critically acclaimed documentary MY RUN is coming to movie theaters nationwide for an exclusive one night premiere event on Thursday, March 31st at 7:00pm (Local Time). Narrated by Academy Award winner Billy Bob Thornton, MY RUN is the inspirational story of real life superhero Terry Hitchcock, the 57 year old man who ran 75 consecutive marathons in 75 consecutive days. This powerful and uplifting documentary exemplifies a commitment to something greater than yourself and achieving something deemed impossible. Following the feature, audiences will take a deeper look into the story through Q&A and interviews with the star Terry Hitchcock and his son, support team member Chris Hitchcock. A portion of proceeds from the MY RUN Premiere event will benefit the Livestrong Foundation.

Tickets went on sale to the general public on Friday, February 18th.

Twin Cities theaters include:

  • Eagan 16 EAGAN MN 55122
  • AMC Eden Prairie 18 EDEN PRAIRIE MN 55344
  • Movies 8 MANKATO MN 56001
  • AMC Arbor Lakes Megastar 16 MAPLE GROVE MN 55369
  • Brooklyn Center 20 MINNEAPOLIS MN 55430
  • AMC Block E 15 MINNEAPOLIS MN 55403
  • Showplace Theatre SAINT LOUIS PARK MN 55416
  • AMC Rosedale 14 SAINT PAUL MN 55113

Click here for a list of participating theaters.

HT Run Minnesota

Give to The Max 2010

Last year, more than 38,000 donors logged on to GiveMN.org and contributed more than $14 million to 3,434 Minnesota nonprofits, whose missions range from feeding the hungry, to protecting the environment, to promoting the arts.

This year’s Great Minnesota Give Together takes place on November 16 from midnight to midnight!! Every donation counts and supports an organization of your choice!

New in 2010, GiveMN will offer several incentives to encourage nonprofit and donor participation in Give to the Max Day, including:

  • A $20,000 and $10,000 prize grant will be awarded to the top two nonprofits in the Twin Cities and the top two nonprofits in Greater Minnesota that attract the largest number of individual donors on Give to the Max Day.
  • Throughout the 24-hour event, an individual donor will be randomly chosen every hour to have an additional $1,000 given to the charity that received the donor’s original donation.
  • Donors will have the opportunity to double their dollars for hundreds of featured nonprofits that have secured matching funds for Give to the Max Day.

Running Related

  • Twin Cities Running Club (TC Running) they are a “rival” USATF team but it is all fun and games.
  • Team USA – MN is a post-collegiate training center and group for runners to be coached and supported while they strive to fulfill their athletic goals.
  • Bolder Options is a great youth mentoring program that connects youth and mentors through running (and biking) activities.  I would highly recommend volunteering as a mentor with Bolder Options.
  • MN Intercollegiate Athletic Conference contains 13 member colleges that support student athletes.
  • YWCA provides a variety of services to pretty much every population. They focus primarily on racial justice and empowering women and girls. In Minneapolis they also operate 3 fitness facilities. We are a member of the YWCA.
  • YMCA also provides a variety of services and operates a lot of fitness facilities around Minneapolis and the West Metro. Some of our friends work for the YMCA, though none of their facilities are conveniently located for us.
  • ALARC Active Life and Running Club is another local running group that “promotes fitness and friends”.  They also sponsor the ALARC Wall at the 20 mile mark in the Twin Cities Marathon.
  • She Runs She Runs provides a 10 week running program for girls aged 9-14 that guides them to complete a final 5k race.

Here are some organizations that we gave to last year and will give to again this year:

  • Elpis Enterprises has been another great partner for my work in MN. Elpis or Hope provides teenagers the opportunity to gain work-related skills and leadership through screen printing and other businesses. My first encouter with Elpis was with their bird feeder program. We bought kits and Paul brought out one of his employees and they helped my kids build 20 bird feeders in 1 hour!
  • Achieve Minneapolis is more or less a foundation that supports programs within the Minneapolis Public Schools. They provide grants for classrooms, teacher professional development, field trips, host career fairs, and much much more.
  • CommonBond Communities provides affordable housing and supportive services in the Twin Cities. I put CommonBond under youth development because I volunteered with them during the summer of my Americorps*VISTA service. I served as a program assistant in a summer program that combined fun and learning during the afternoons for children residents of the Seward Towers. They provide many more services to their residents.
  • World Relief helps refugees adjust to life in Minnesota and America. This is the umbrella organization for the English literacy site that Christy and I co-coordinate. They also provide job training, initial welcoming services, housing assistance and much more to refugees as they walk off the plane and into the sometimes harsh tundra of MN.
  • Minnesota Public Radio is a great news source for both local and national issues. They also have a rocking music station that plays a lot of local bands.
  • Second Harvest of the Heartland is a large food bank that is helping to end hunger in MN. It is affiliated with the national Feeding America (formerly Second Harvest Network) and does some great work here in the Twin Cities.

Give to the Max Day was created to increase giving to nonprofits across the state. All donations on Give to the Max Day will be made through GiveMN.org, a first-of-its-kind giving website that helps Minnesotans discover, support and engage with nonprofits. GiveMN also lets donors manage their charitable giving by recording online contributions and storing receipts.

Throw in a plug for your favorite MN non-profit in the comment section.

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