There are so many magical moments that happen in a GOTR season. You come to expect the ones between the girls because of the community they build going through the 12-week program. You hope for the ones between coaches and girls. Then there are some you don’t expect, like the ones that happen after GOTR practice and in the participants’ homes and families. While we know the ultimate big picture of Girls on the Run is making that lasting impact out of season and off the track, sometimes you just wonder if it really does. Thanks to Elke and Courtney, we don’t have to wonder. The experience they have had in Girls on the Run has oozed from practice to the 5K to their home. This is one story that gets us up and to the office each day to see if we can contribute something to help make this magic happen in another girl’s home. Let us introduce you to Elke, a GOTR mom:
“Girls on the Run has been a game-changer for us. Cassidy, my shy daughter came home one day asking if she could participate in GOTR and if I would be her running buddy. I realize this would not have happened, if she didn’t absolutely love her teacher, Mrs. Mraz, who told her about the program. As a former trackster and current track coach, I had been wishing for the day that one of my children would want to run with me! As I was a couple of months away from turning 50, doing a 5K with her was empowering for her and for myself! During the Fall of 2019, I watched as Cassidy became more confident, more involved with friendships on the team, and basically broke out of her shell during the GOTR season. We had an incredible time at the event, and a real “We got this together” attitude has run through our home ever since. That 5K proved a few things to us about ourselves, and that was a great way to end the decade and begin the new one! Those benefits have continued to enrich our lives and strengthen the relationship we have with each other and the friends made along the way. After I met more people from the program, I just knew I needed to be a part of this program and its longevity in our community. A few months later, I was honored to be asked to coordinate the local Heart and Sole program, which carries the amazing lessons from GOTR forth to middle school! Thank you for helping us find our place, our voice, and another way to help our community and the amazing growth of our young women and leaders! This picture has been my screensaver ever since the race, because it reminds us both that we can do anything we put our mind and heart into!”
Photo credit: Image courtesy of Girls on the Run International.