A: Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Butler County is an agency affiliate of the oldest, largest and most effective youth mentoring organization in the United States. We have been the leader in one-to-one youth service for more than a century, developing positive relationships that have a direct and lasting impact on the lives of young people.
Big Brothers/Big Sisters serves children, ages 7 through 18, in communities across the country. Our vision is to provide a mentor for every child who wants and needs one.
The mission of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Butler County is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.
Q: What is the Run 4 Kids event?
A: Run 4 Kids began three years ago to replace Bowl for Kids' Sake as our largest single fundraising event of the year.
The event offers a 1k kids’ fun run, a 5k and a 10k. Participants can either walk or run the event, and there is an option for chip-timing.
All money raised from our runners will go toward local mentoring programming. Last year, we had about 400 participants and raised $50,000.
Q: What goes in to organizing this event?
A: We have a committee that has spent countless hours planning all facets of the event, including designing the race route, securing sponsorships, soliciting event volunteers, marketing and social media for the event, organizing event day logistics like food and entertainment, graphic design of t-shirts and giveaways — the list goes on. We are fortunate to have a staff and board of directors that work tirelessly to get everything done.
Q: How will the money be used?
A: Our goal is to raise $75,000 this year, which will all be used locally to strengthen our one-to-one youth mentoring programs.
There is never a fee for our programs. Events like this help us create the necessary resources to find, screen and train volunteers and then match children with those caring mentors, supported by professional staff that provide guidance that leads to academic achievement and success in life.
Q: How can someone participate?
A: Pre-registration is available online at www.bbbsbutler.org/run4kids until April 23 (to guarantee race T-shirt) or by mailing your entry form and fee, postmarked by April 23, to Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Butler County, 1755 S. Erie Hwy, STE D, Hamilton, Ohio 45011.
Pre-registration fees are $30 for the 5K and 10K chip timed races, $25 for the non-chip walk, and $5 for the Kids Fun Run. All include a T-shirt.
In-person registration at Voice of America Park will begin at 8:30 a.m. and is $40, which includes a shirt while supplies last.
Run 4 Kids is held the weekend prior to the Flying Pig events in Cincinnati. It is a great opportunity for additional training before that big event.
Q: What is most rewarding about your work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters?
A: The reward for us is seeing the children in our program build a brighter future for themselves with some help and guidance from a Big Brother or Big Sister.
Research has shown that children who are matched in our program are 46 percent less likely to participate in risky behavior, like drug and alcohol use; 85 percent have higher educational and academic aspirations than those without a caring adult mentor.
Contact this contributing writer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to go
What: The third annual Run 4 Kids to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler County
Where: Voice of America Park, VOA Park Drive, West Chester Twp.
When: Sunday, April 30; on-site registration and packet pick up, 8:30 a.m.; 1K Kids Fun Run, 10 a.m.; 10K chip timed run, 5K chip timed run, 5K non-chip timed walk, 10:30 a.m.
Cost: Pre-registration until April 23, $30 for the 5K and 10K chip timed races, $25 for the non-chip walk, and $5 for the Kids Fun Run; in-person registration, $40.
Additional information: Participants are encouraged to dress up as their favorite superheroes. Prizes will be awarded for the best costumed individual, dynamic duo, family and team.
Refreshments and door prizes for participants will be available after the race. Awards will be given to division winners and overall winners.
For more information and to register, go online to www.bbbsbutler.org/run4kids.