Circle of Love 5K
The inaugural Shelly Roberts Circle of Love “5K for the Kids” Walk/Run was a huge success at Tropical Park.
More than 220 runners and walkers participated to support this important fundraising event. All proceeds raised went directly to benefit the Children’s Cancer Fund, a Jackson Memorial Foundation affiliated organization, and the Footprints Buddy and Support Program at the Pediatric Oncology/Hematology Unit at Shands Hospital for Children at the University of Florida.
This fundraiser was the brainchild of Miami’s Ali Sokol, who single handedly planned and organized this event in honor of her grandmother, Shelly Roberts, a cancer survivor. In the summer 2005, Shelly’s life was forever changed when she was diagnosed with lung cancer. As Shelly battled cancer, she became distraught at the high cost of medical treatment and grew concerned for those less fortunate who could not afford it.
Under the guidance of the Coral Gables Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization, the Shelly Roberts Circle of Love was created to raise money for these seriously ill cancer patients and their families who are in desperate need of additional support during this overwhelming and stressful time.
In the past seven years, the Circle of Love has been raising money through donations and other fundraising events, using the funds to benefit many families dealing with cancer, especially families battling childhood cancer.
The “5K for the Kids” was specifically created to raise money for two organizations that directly deal with children fighting cancer. This year’s event raised more than $15,000 to be divided between The Children’s Cancer Fund and The Footprints Buddy and Support Program.
The Children’s Cancer Fund, a Jackson Memorial Foundation affiliated organization, provides support services for children and their families as they are dealing with cancer treatments. The money donated by the Circle of Love has been used for medications, food, lodging, gas cards for transportation to and from treatment, and other family emergency situations. Funds have also been used for information/comfort bags for newly diagnosed patients, special celebrations, such as birthdays or end of treatment, and Arts in Medicine projects.
Footprints Buddy and Support Program serves the Pediatric Oncology/Hematology Department at Shands Hospital for Children at the University of Florida. This program is made up of student volunteers who serve kids and their families during the lengthy hospital stays that come with their treatment of cancer, sickle cell, bone marrow transplants, and various other cancer related conditions.
Footprints has matched pediatric cancer patients with dedicated volunteers who have become an essential part of their support team. The funds donated by the Circle of Love are used to provide comfort packages to new families, have birthday parties and holiday parties in the unit, provide meals to families staying at the Ronald McDonald House, and conduct special celebrations when kids complete their treatments.
At the “5K for the Kids,” there were trophies for winners in the Women’s and Men’s 25-and-older category and Under-25 division. In the kids’ races, each child received a participation medal. There was a bounce house and a D.J. and free bagels, fruit, muffins, granola bars and cookies.
An important addition to this event was a specially arranged Gift of Life Bone Marrow Registration Drive. Erica Sokol and numerous volunteers from the Footprints Buddy and Support Program ran the drive, and all were encouraged to register by swabbing their cheeks.
Ali Sokol, the event coordinator, is already planning the second Run/Walk.
For information, contact Ali Sokol at 305-962-6250 or email her at [email protected].
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/07/21/v-fullstory/2898315/ortiz-driven-to-achieve-his-goals.html#storylink=cpy
GIFT OF LOVE BONE MARROW DRIVE @ THE 1ST ANNUAL 5K FOR THE KIDS