Denise Maloney, an Early Childhood and Health/Wellness Coordinator for West Iron County Schools in Michigan, has long been a health advocate and avid OrganWise Guys supporter. We are truly inspired by her enthusiasm and energy to create a healthier generation of children. She informed us of an annual event that Stambaugh Elementary holds on the last day of school to celebrate the end of another healthy year ~ A FREE 5K! The post race report was phenomenal so we thought we would share her account of the event to encourage other schools and communities to do something similar!
It was an AMAZING day – over 700 people participated – it was powerful. Gave me GOOSEBUMPS! One of the BEST days of my life! Students from preschool through high school; families, grandparents, toddlers in strollers, babies in backpacks, school staff, administrators, Superintendent and principals, school board members, and volunteers making it happen. They made me so proud of our school and community! We are blessed. All of our local media covered it – TV stations, newspapers, and radio. Our local police and sheriff departments escorted us. One of our preschool moms sang the National Anthem. Amazing. My own 3 children all volunteered/participated.
It was a grand event on our last day of school to celebrate a year of being healthy and creating a healthier generation. The best part??? There were so many(!), but I think the BEST part was that our annual school 5K is always free as we want as many to participate as possible. However, this year, for the first time, we encouraged people to make a donation if they wanted to and I am proud to say that we raised over $3000 to donate to our “Iron County Cancer Unit!” All money will stay local and help people and their families that are battling cancer. It took my breath away. We hoped to inspire in our students to not only have a HEALTHY heart, but to have a GIVING heart AND a HAPPY one as well!
Congratulations to Denise Maloney and everyone involved at Stambaugh Elementary for such a successful event! This goes to show how a community can pull together for good health and for a great cause!