Yup. This time with less running.
I'm so honored to be part of the 2019 Dream Big! Boston Marathon Alumni Team. While I won't be running Boston this year, I'm thrilled to be taking on a smaller fundraising and running committment to add to the incredible impact that this year's 2019 Dream Big! Boston Marathon Team will have.
Three years ago, just months after my father's passing, I joined the Dream Big! 2016 Boston Marathon team to honor my father's memory in a way that let me talk over and over again about him, our connection around athletics, and his pride in all females playing any kind of sport at any level.
I got to spend much of the year talking about how important access to athletics is, and how, for girls in low-income situations, the biggest barrier is access to equipment, attire, and fees.
About Dream Big!
Dream Big! works to provide girls from low-income situations with the equipment, uniforms, sports attire, athletic footwear, program fees, training expenses, sports opportunities and the supplies they need to participate in sports and physical activities that contribute to their health, education and overall well-being.
Over the past eight years Dream Big! programs have had a direct impact on more than 35,000 girls in need through equipment donations, program fee scholarships, sports clinics, college showcases and the Dream Big! Leadership Conferences for middle and high school female athletes in urban communities.
Athletics in My Life
I am a product of girls’ athletics. Being on a team and learning inumerable life-long lessons through every practice I attended, every game lost, and every competition won has shaped the way I go through life and the way I see the world. From pickup games to practices for basketball, soccer, tennis, rowing, volleyball, softball and others, I learned to work as part of a team on a mission, to play hard even when we were down, to hold a growth mindset for myself, to live a healthy life, and to set goals and build plans to achieve them. Athletics are a huge opportunity to open up a young girls’ eyes to her potential, and I want to make that happen for many more girls through Dream Big!
I've also seen this in action. From coaching boys' and girls' tennis at a public school in Detroit, to coaching girls' crew and ice hockey at a private school in Boston, to coaching crew for public school students in the DC area, I have seen athletics create a space for growth and friendship and a bubble for kids to practice failing and thriving.
In Detroit, in particular, when coaching a group of girls who had never been on a formal sports team before, I saw their self-esteem, healthy habits, and personal and academic achievement go through the roof, and I'm looking to YOU to help bring these opportunities to girls everywhere by donating to Dream Big!
"How Much Should I Give?"
Every single dollar helps! And if you're wondering what impact your dollars will have, here are some suggestions:
$26.20 for every mile of one of my dad's favorite races (to watch)
$35 will purchase a regulation soccer ball or basketball
$50 will purchase a pair a new pair of sneakers or cleats
$100 pays for an 8 week dance or fitness class for 1 girl
$200 pays for a new bike and helmet
$500 pays for a week long summer sports camp
$1000 pays for new uniforms, equipment and training for an entire sports team
$2500 pays for physical education equipment for one full year for hundreds of children in an elementary or middle school
$10,000 pays for a new community based sports program for 100 female athletes.