“RUN LULY”, a 5K Run/Walk Event for Haiti relief, raises over $16,000 for World Wide Village charitable organization
(Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN) – Run Luly, a USA Track & Field sanctioned 5K run/walk, was held on August 23rd, 2014 in North Liberty, IA. Members of Grace Community Church who have collectively participated in at least four mission trips to Haiti since 2012 with St. Paul based NGO, World Wide Village (WWV), organized this inaugural event.
Without question, Haiti’s needs are vast. It is the most economically challenged country in the western hemisphere with 80% of its population living in poverty, and only an estimated 52.9% of Haitians over the age of 15 able to read and write. Additionally, their lack of access to basic healthcare results in an exponentially high risk of birth defects and infant deaths, with a 7% risk of death in the first five years of life, and an adult life expectancy of only 62 years of age.
“We are so grateful to the organizers, volunteers, and participants of the Run Luly 5K race. The support and generosity of everyone involved makes a true and lasting difference in the lives of the children and families in Luly and Williamson.” says Pat Mortensen, Vice President of WWV.
Luly, the race’s “name-sake” and its sister-village, Williamson, are impoverished communities along Haiti’s western coastline that receive year round support and relief as “focus villages” for WWV.
Over 280 runners participated in the Run Luly 5K race event, and the combined support of runners and their communities has raised over $16,000 so far, with donations still rolling in! 100% of the funds raised go towards WWV’s “City on a Hill” initiative to provide healthcare, housing, economic development through sustainable agricultural programs, spiritual development, and vocational school training for the children and families in these “focus villages”.
It was a fun and family friendly day; even with the interment rain that turned out to be a blessing by keeping the race participates cool and hydrated! In addition to the 5K Run there was a live band, food, booths from various sponsors, and an exciting raffle with prizes handcrafted by Haitian artisans, a one year membership to Core Fitness, Hawkeye football tickets, restaurant gift cards, and more!
Matt Anderson, a Doctor of Internal Medicine affiliated with Mercy Medical Center, heads up twice- annual WWV medical mission teams in Haiti, and he explains that, “There is a clear physical need there, and we are trying to integrate what we believe in passionately, and that is Biblical soul care. People have physical, emotional and spiritual needs. So we’ve taken teams of physicians, nurses and medical technicians along with non-clinically trained people who share their faith and strengthen and encourage people who are already believers, to take care of the whole person.”
Founded in 2006, and run by St. Paul residents, Randy and Patricia Mortensen, WWV is committed to empowering Haiti’s people with the education, tools and skills necessary to improve their quality of living, and provide viable opportunities for current and future generations to live meaningful and productive lives.
To make a donation, please visit www.RunLuly.com. Please also visit www.WorldWideVillage.org to learn more about the organization, and the many ways you can help make positive change happen in Haiti.
August 23rd, 2014 – Heritage Christian School – 255, Hackberry St., North Liberty, Iowa 52317
For additional information, images and/or press inquiries, please contact Alexia Rouquette at 561.945.6755 or ARouquette@worldwidevillage.org