Nonprofit Running Program for Boys Builds Infrastructure to Support National Growth.
Charlotte, NC; May 2017 — Let Me Run is a nonprofit holistic health program for boys with a comprehensive curriculum that uses running to counteract negative societal pressures and stereotypes. Let Me Run is proud to announce the hires of Hailee Sandberg as Eastern Iowa Corridor Regional Director and Karen Ralston as DC Metro Program Coordinator.
Since beginning in Charlotte, NC in 2009, Let Me Run has reached over 15,000 4th – 8th grade boys across 27 states and counting. Fall 2017 will be the first Let Me Run season in the Eastern Iowa Corridor, and with 10 schools on board and a regional Let Me Run 5k race planned to end the season, this new region is poised for success.
“Let Me Run is excited to bring on Hailee as the Regional Director in the Eastern Iowa Corridor Region,” Let Me Run Executive Director Paul Martino says. “Hailee has already increased awareness about the program and has begun to raise funds for scholarships in the region, which will allow more boys to participate in the program. She will be a great addition to the Let Me Run team.”
Hailee brings over 17 years experience in the nonprofit sector to her new role at Let Me Run. She has served as a Children at Risk Task Force Coordinator for Horizons A Family Service Alliance, as a Family Team Meeting Facilitator for Partnership for Safe Families, and most recently as a Program Manager for Girls on the Run of Eastern Iowa.
Hailee says, “I believe that if boys are taught what true confidence means that they will be boys who grow into strong men who believe that ALL people are worthy and equal. I have two amazing boys. I want them and all boys to grow up in a world where they are accepted for who they are — truly valued for their compassion and empathy for others.”
Also a mother of two boys, Karen says, “There is nothing more important to me than raising my 2 young boys to be decent, kind, happy human beings. As a first-time Let Me Run coach in spring 2017, I learned that Let Me Run embodies so much of what it takes to help make that possible, not only for my boys, but for boys all over the world. I am honored to now have even more of a role in an organization that shares my passion, and recognizes an often overlooked need for young boys. I can't wait to help bring the program to as many MD/DC/VA-area elementary and middle schools as possible.”
With a history of over 50 Let Me Run teams, the DC Metro region has steadily grown over the past four years. “Let Me Run has had a presence in the DC Metro region since the first pilot team in 2012,” says Let Me Run Executive Director Paul Martino. “The demand for the program is high. It’s now time to put the infrastructure in place in order to reach every boy in the DC Metro region. As DC Metro Program Coordinator, Karen's main focus will be growing the program in the Montgomery County area. She brings both a strong passion for the program as well as significant nonprofit experience to bring Let Me Run to new heights in the DC Metro Region.”
To her new role at Let Me Run, Karen brings over 19 years of experience in fundraising, volunteer recruitment, budget management, corporate sponsorship, communications, and event management for both for-profit and nonprofit organizations.
Both Hailee and Karen will help meet the demand for the Let Me Run program across the country. With a national growth rate of over 60% per year, the need for Let Me Run is obvious. Challenging the negative pressures society places on boys to “man up” and hide their emotions, Let Me Run’s holistic curriculum encourages positive emotional, social, and physical development with lesson topics including emotional expression, anti-bullying, teamwork and healthy eating. Upon completion of the seven-week season, Let Me Run boys compete in a celebratory 5k race and leave the program with a sense of accomplishment, a deeper belief in self, and a greater appreciation for their peers.
More About Let Me Run
Let Me Run is a nonprofit holistic health program for 4th through 8th grade boys. Using running as the vehicle to inspire, teach and reach boys, the organization’s comprehensive curriculum breaks down destructive male stereotypes that often stand in the way of positive futures for boys. Twice a week for seven weeks, our trained coaches guide teams of six to fourteen boys through the program, designed to amplify confidence, self-expression, and respect for others. Each fall and spring season culminates in a 5k race that celebrates the boys’ emotional, social and physical growth.
Local runners or parents, who have a passion for supporting young boys’ physical and emotional health, typically start new teams. Individuals interested in bringing the Let Me Run program to their communities are encouraged to contact the organization online at LetMeRun.org. Online donations to support the program and its scholarship efforts are also encouraged and greatly appreciated.