Girls on the Run emphasizes emotional, mental and physical development of girls in 3rd through 8th grades. And now thanks to a $225,000 grant from Renown Health, the local program will be expanding to serve even more girls in our area – with a special focus on serving low income, high-needs areas.
Renown Health’s commitment to improving community health and well-being aligns well with nonprofit organizations like Girls on the Run-Sierras.
The Girls on the Run program uses evidence-based curriculum to inspire young girls to become independent thinkers, enhances their problem-solving skills and encourages them to make healthy decisions.
Program Focuses Girls on Fitness and Empowerment
“The program is about helping girls avoid going into the ‘girl box’,” says Danielle Rees, Girls on the Run-Sierras executive director. “According to our founder, Molly Barker, ‘the girl box’ is the place where girls go typically around middle school when they stop listening to their own authentic inner voices and start listening to all the messages in the media and society about what it means to be a girl and what it means to be a woman, and often times these messages can be harmful to the girls’ well-being.”
Twice per week the girls have practice after school. The success of the 10-week program is seen when the girls complete a celebratory 5K run.
“They’re working toward the 5K every week in practice, building up their physical training and also the emotional drive, problem solving, confidence and skill building to achieve that goal,” explains Danielle. “For an 8 year old, running 3.1 miles is kind of like running a marathon to an adult – it’s a really big accomplishment.”
Thanks to Renown’s support, Girls on the Run-Sierras will expand programming in Washoe County to six schools each year – reaching 18 additional schools and 500 young girls in our region by the summer of 2018.
The majority of these schools are located in the 89502 zip code – a low income, high needs area.
“This program has been growing steadily since starting in Reno four years ago, but before this funding, we were only able to offer the program at one Title I school each year. Now will we have programs at 12 Title I schools over the next three years,” Danielle says.
Title I schools are schools that receive federal assistance because of higher numbers of children from low-income families.
Renown Health provides financial support of healthcare-related, not-for-profit organizations as a reflection of its commitment to community. To learn more about the sponsorship application process, click here.