Girls on the Run needs you!

8 Jan

A couple of years ago I volunteered for a short time with the Girls on the Run team from Schlegel Elementary School. I fancy myself a runner, so thought I could use my positive experience with running to encourage these young ladies, some of whom had never run any distance before.

What I discovered is that the program is about so much more than running.

For sure, the girls do a lot of running. But what really impressed me about Girls on the Run is the program’s focus on life skills, confidence, positive self-image and personal and community connections — all while encouraging physical activity.

The eight-week program is for girls in 3rd through 8th grade, and is run entirely by volunteer coaches who follow a structured curriculum and engage their teams with fun, interactive lessons. Teams meet twice a week in person or virtually, and the season culminates with everyone participating in a 5K. The year I helped out, that event was held at MCC. It was a huge party with lots of teams and hundreds of girls coming together to celebrate their successes.

Right now Girls on the Run needs more coaches to help bring this inspirational program as many young ladies as possible. Coaches do not need to be athletes but must be at least 18 years old to serve as an assistant or 21 to serve as a head coach. All volunteer coaches must complete a background check and attend a virtual training session.

It could be a life-changing decision for everyone involved. As one coach said,

“It was so rewarding to be part of the girls’ journey to becoming empowered women. And I can’t begin to describe how changed I am as a person by learning the curriculum alongside them.”

For more information about coaching and Girls on the Run of Greater Rochester, click here.

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