BENEFITING: PLAY BRIGADE INC
ORGANIZER: PLAY BRIGADE INC
EVENT: 2017 Boston Marathon
EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017
My heart is bursting with joy as I share the exciting news that I have been chosen to run with The Play Brigade Boston Marathon 2017 Team! On October 18, 2016, I received the exciting news from Dawn Oates, President/Founder of The Play Brigade that I had been selected, and she was offering me an invitational entry for the 2017 Boston Marathon! Only 9 days before I had received Dawn’s email about being selected to run on the team, I had completed the Chicago Marathon and qualified for the Boston Marathon in 2018. I could have taken a year off from the Boston Marathon in 2017, but that would have been the easy way out, so I accepted the offer to run on the team!
Dawn is a parent of 3 children at Dexter Southfield, Jack, Olivia, and Harper. I have worked at Dexter Southfield for ten years in the admissions office, and I knew when Dawn shared the news that The Play Brigade Team would be a new charity in the Boston Marathon last year, I had to be part of it in 2017! Dawn’s youngest daughter, Harper suffered a catastrophic spinal cord injury at birth and is in her first year at Dexter Southfield in our Pre-K program.
The Play Brigade is dedicated to creating opportunities for play, recreation, and sports, where everyone participates and belongs, regardless of age or ability. Rick Muhr, my coach for the 2008 Boston Marathon and 2016 Chicago Marathon is head coach for our team. On my very first day of training for the 2008 Boston Team, Coach Rick shared a quote by Margaret Mead, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful and committed people can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” I learned that through running, I could run for those that can’t, and when I focus less on what I want my personal goals to be, it allows me to run with ease, grace, and compassion for others. I thank you all in advance for supporting this great cause. I look forward to sharing some of the amazing things The Play Brigade have done over the course of my training with you!
PLAY BRIGADE INC wrote -
More fun for everyone. (Really, everyone.)
After Dawn and Justin Oates's third child was paralyzed in a catastrophic birth injury, they discovered the difficulty of planning fun family activities that included all three of their children. What started with asking for an accessible swing at a local playground evolved into a vision of a world for all individuals where there are no barriers to play, recreation, or sports, and where inclusion is the cornerstone of community. From there, The Play Brigade was born.
Advocate. Engage. Empower.
Millions of children and adults living with disabilities are missing opportunities to interact with their peers and their community in fun and meaningful ways because they are overlooked in the planning process. The Play Brigade believes that inclusion, the idea that everyone participates and everyone belongs, is the cornerstone of community. As such, the work we do is inclusive, rather than “specialized,” and we raise the bar beyond ADA compliant. We create awareness of inclusion as a social problem, illustrating how individuals and entire communities benefit when every person has the opportunity to participate and belong.
How we move the needle for social change:
We form allies who are committed to making inclusion a priority and who have the desire, ability and leadership position to effect change within their organization or municipality.
We consult with organizations on what changes they can make that will have great impact toward being more inclusive.
We create universal opportunities for fun that demonstrate what true community inclusion looks like and showcase its benefits to communities and society as a whole.