CLARKTON — The girls at Booker T. Washington Primary School have been given a challenge: Train and prepare to run in a 5K race by the end of the school year, and they are taking the challenge seriously by forming the first-ever Bladen County Girls on the Run program.
According to Valerie Newton,public relations and information officer for Bladen County Schools, Girls on the Run is a non-profit organization dedicated to creating a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams.
“Meeting twice a week after school in small teams of eight to15 girls, GOTR teaches life skills through dynamic, conversation-based lessons and running games,” Newton said. “The 24-lesson curriculum is taught by certified Girls on the Run coaches in partnership with a school nurse and includes three parts: understanding themselves, valuing relationships and teamwork, and understanding how they connect with and shape the world at large.”
Running is used to inspire and motivate girls, encourage lifelong health and fitness, and build confidence through accomplishment. At each season’s conclusion, the girls and their running buddies will complete a 5K running event.
“Completing a 5K gives the girls a tangible sense of achievement as well as a framework for setting and achieving life goals,” Newton added. “The result — making the seemingly impossible, possible and teaching girls that they can.”