Volunteers, clients, community members and staff will lace up their sneakers to participate in the Kenneth Young Center 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, May 10, at Busse Woods in Elk Grove Village. The event will support the vital community programs provided by Kenneth Young Center.
Last year KYC assisted over 1,950 adults and 7,197 local seniors by providing, life-changing mental health and senior support services.
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Registration for this family and pet-friendly event will start at 8 a.m. with an official start time of 9 a.m.
Approximately one in four Americans ages 18 and older experience a mental health disorder in a given year. Almost 3.5 million adults age 65 and older live below poverty level in the United States. These numbers reflect the vital need to raise money, awareness and support for the mental health and senior citizens support services that Kenneth Young Center provides the Northwest suburban community.
Although the walk has experienced changes throughout the years it continues to be a favorite among community members. In response to suggestions from participants, KYC will introduce official chip timing results for runners.
"I'm excited to see the addition of chimp timing to this year's event," said George Vroustouris, committee member. "It should bring a much larger group of runners."
KYC relies on major events and donations from individuals, businesses and various organizations to make up for state funding gaps. Many people attend the event for the first time and decide to become more involved throughout the year. The event is an excellent way for people to help children, families and seniors in the community.
For individuals that feel they cannot donate their own money there are a variety of options for fundraisers. Participants can signup online and raise money through email and social media via individual donor Web pages. They can turn in donations the day of the event if they fundraise offline.
"People can donate or raise money for the event in so many ways. It all begins by asking," said Kathy Polach, a longtime committee member for the event.
The 5K Run/Walk is also an excellent opportunity for local companies to involve their employees in a community outreach initiative. Businesses can form teams in support of the event and increase corporate visibility and employee morale. Becoming an event sponsor is another way for companies to get involved. For additional information on business partnerships, contact Fran Geraci at (847) 524-8800, ext. 103, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 5K is 3.1-miles and can be completed as a walk, run or leisurely stroll. Registration begins at 8 a.m. The official start time is 9 a.m. Runners and walkers will begin the course in opposite directions. Chip-timing results will be used to accurately track the finish times for runners. During registration attendees can enjoy a warm-up activity along with snacks and beverages. The family area will include face painting, balloons and games.
"Everyone should come out to support this even," said Cheri Seley, Resource Development Manager. "It is a great opportunity to help seniors and people struggling with mental illness. It is also a fun way to start Mother's Day weekend."
Members of the committee are working to tell others about the event. By using email, telephone, personal donor pages and social media they hope to get many new participants registered and in attendance.
"The event is a perfect opportunity to know more about our community and enjoy a fantastic day with a great group of people. Fun, sun, and the ability to make a difference," said new committee member, Mary Egan.
Last year, the event raised almost $40,000 for vital, lifesaving services. Kenneth Young Center hopes to raise even more this year. Registration for runners is $25 per person. Walkers are encouraged to donate $25 per person or $50 per family. Community members are encouraged to raise money individually or by forming a team. To register, please visit Kenneth Young Center's website at www.kennethyoung.org/events-walk.asp.
Kenneth Young Center is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit provider of mental health and senior citizens support services based in Elk Grove Village. Its mission is to help people feel good, do better and find solutions by providing counseling, assessment, treatment, resource coordination and senior services. The service area extends throughout the Chicago area with heavy concentration in Elk Grove and Schaumburg townships. Kenneth Young Center serves all people regardless of income and insurances. It also has a wide variety of volunteer opportunities and a resale shop in Schaumburg.
For information, visit www.kennethyoung.org or call (847) 524-8800, ext. 141.
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