Area Charities, Runners Help Send Message of Hope for All
The Pink Heals 5k Color Rush on September 7 will feature pink fire trucks, color-splashed kids and dye-drenched teens and adults. However, the message behind the day's events is what will really leave a mark on the participants. Two Fredericksburg-area cancer charities are teaming up to spread awareness about all types of cancer to all audiences.
The Pink Heals 2013 National Tour is a cancer awareness movement which has steadily been making its way across the country. Clad with pink fire trucks and police cruisers, the Guardians of the Ribbon provide the backdrop for a variety of community events in cities across America. The Fairy Godmother Project is a Fredericksburg-based non-profit whose mission is to provide for the families of children in treatment for pediatric cancer. FGP provides services ranging from lawn care to professional photography sessions.
Andie McConnell, the Executive Director of FGP, says while the two are different organizations, "the Pink Heals mission is in line with ours, which is essentially taking care of the woman. We take care of the mom." In their own way, Pink Heals and FGP support cancer patients, families and friends by making their efforts inclusive, rather than exclusive.
One local elementary school teacher has already tuned into this important message. Sherrie Roland of Grafton Village Elementary School learned about the Color Rush on Facebook and has been recruiting runners since then. Roland and a group of fellow Grafton Village teachers created a running team called "Never TuTu Much Hope!" and plan to wear tutus for the race. We "wanted to reflect that it's about hope for all children, not just one particular student," Roland said.
What Roland was alluding to was the specialized help that FGP has already provided to some Grafton Village students. The school knows first-hand its work in the community. FGP recently lent its services to a pre-school student there. The Grafton Village staff has also helped to raise money for FGP before.
Much like its all-encompassing mission, Pink Heals and FGP welcome all age groups and level of runners to join them at Curtis Memorial Park for the Color Rush. "The two [organizations] together are an exciting event for the community," Roland said.