EVENT DATE: Nov 01, 2013
I recently picked up a new hobby and passion for running and endurance sports. After years of battling severe knee pains due to acute tendinitis, ultimately sidelining my collegiate athletic pursuits, the return to competitive athletics was a challenging process. After going out for my first run after a long hiatus, I painfully could only complete 1.25 miles. As soon as I started running, my knees throbbed with pain and I honestly didn’t know why I ever laced up my sneakers. Fast forward a few weeks, on April 9th, 2013 I completed my first 5K race! And couple of weeks later on April 21st, I completed my first 4 mile race in Central Park in which I ran in support of the victims of the tragic Boston Marathon bombing.
After the last race, I decided to venture into military style, obstacle course racing. How could running 11 miles, climbing over inverted walls, doing tire runs, and carrying sand bags NOT be fun?! When my friends heard about this new hobby they thought I was crazy. Over the next few weeks I will be training and competing in two races: the Civilian Military Combine on September 14th, 2013 and the New York City Urbanatholon sponsored by Men’s Health Magazine on October 26th, 2013. (Both races will be taking place in New York City)
Instead of just running and competing for my own personal pride or desire to stay in shape, I have decided to compete to raise money for a cause I am really passionate about - financial literacy education for underrepresented youth. According to recent stats, our underrepresented ethnic youth are severely under prepared to handle the responsibility of managing their personal finances mainly due to lack of education on the topic. Only 7 states in the U.S require that students complete a personal finance course as a requirement for high school graduation. Only 7! On a recent national financial literacy exam for high school students, only 1.4% of African-American students and 2.5% of Hispanic American students received a passing score compared to 7.1% for the broader population. It should then come as no surprise that over 10 million people in the United States do not participate in the banking system – do not own a checking or savings account. An overwhelming percentage of these persons are from low income, underrepresented urban communities.
Through my work with D.R.E.A.M. (Developing Responsible Economically Advanced Model-citizens) I have the privilege of working with urban youth in NYC and serving as an usher and humble servant on their road to financial empowerment. As endurance races are very challenging, fundraising for programs focused on underrepresented youth is even more challenging. One of my biggest dreams of the last few years is to expand D.R.E.A.M. on a national level, and I can’t do it without your help.
Join me as I Chase My D.R.E.A.M. and seek to raise $3,000 by November 1st to help fund the organization’s expansion into additional cities. Every dollar raised goes directly to the D.R.E.A.M. Endowment Fund, which provides funding for programming and materials to offer financial literacy education to youth all across the country. Your donation is, of course, 100% tax deductable. If your company does gift matching, please consider submitting a request so that your donation can be doubled! Also, please forward along to your friends, family, colleagues - anyone who might be willing to help out! Every dollar makes a huge difference!
If you are interested in joining my team for the two races, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you don’t want to race but simply want to support, you are invited to attend the races and cheer me on. I’ll be looking for you in the crowd. You can’t miss me…I’ll be the guy chasing my D.R.E.A.M.’s. :-)