Spring, summer and fall are the key seasons for 5K run and walk events that benefit charities in Central Connecticut.
From New Britain’s Race in the Park, benefiting the Connecticut Breast Health Initiative in May; to the Annual Mum-A-Thon 8K Road Race in October to benefit the Veterans Strong Community Center in Bristol; runners, walkers and charity supporters strap on their running shoes and make strides for a cause.
The Chip’s Family Restaurant 5K Road Race, benefitting the Petit Family Foundation stepped off this past Sunday drawing hundreds of supporters to Plainville for the 11th year.
Through the years, the road race has raised well over $1 million for the Petit Family Foundation’s charitable works, many of which champion causes that impact girls and young women. Among them, the Connecticut Children’s Hospital’s Hayley Petit Injury and Violence Prevention Fellowship. The initiative sponsored four female college students’ recent completion of a six-week program at the hospital. In addition, the foundation supports science programs for girls and teens and the teen pregnancy prevention program Pathways/Senderos, based in New Britain to name a few.
“It’s very heartening to see how much support we get,” state Rep. William Petit Jr. said Sunday at the race.
“A lot of people come out because they remember Jennifer, Hayley and Michaela,” he said. “A lot of women who are running now were girls Hayley and Michaela went to school with,” he said referring to his former wife and two daughters, who died in a horrific 2007 home invasion in Cheshire.
It’s too early to tell how much money the foundation raised from Sunday’s event. But funding local programs with proceeds from the race is only half the story.
The foundation chooses to use funds to provide opportunities and assistance to young women and to foster girls and teens interest in STEM courses of study.
We recognize and applaud the Petit Foundation’s efforts to empower girls and teens and hope that this support continues to propel the women of the future into becoming strong, independent professionals, positive role models and accomplished leaders in our community.