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Girls on the Run helps empower young women
Are your daughters learning self-respect and healthy living habits? Well, since it came on the scene in Nebraska in 2003, Girls on the Run has grown to 1100 youth who are learning precisely those skills.
It only came to Nebraska 8 years ago, but this year the program has made its way to Hastings.
Fifth grader Faith Loudon of Hastings is a Girl on the Run and says her confidence has run through the roof.
"I say so much encouraging words now than I used to and I'm not down on myself anymore," said Faith.
That's one of the goals of the International Girls on the Run non-profit which encourages girls to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles through running.
"Quite a few of the especially shy girls have really opened up and become more great participators," said Hastings Coach Sara Theoharis.
Theoharis is one of the coaches for the Hastings chapter of GOTR. This is it's first year in the city and it's more than 60 girls strong.
Meeting twice a week, girls learn about self-empowerment, body image, gossip control and self respect and, of course, they run.
"I think that our kids don't have the physical activity that they need to have and I think that anytime that you can give them that exposure to something new and different that physical activity I think it's a great idea," said Ginny Loudon.
Faith's mother Ginny says it's changed the dynamic at home - with family members being more aware when they say something negative about themselves or others.
"So they're already learning those things at a younger age that you hope will carry with them through their teenage years," said Ginny,.
"Just be happy with themselves and the special way God made them," said Theoharis.
Last Tuesday the GOTR Lollipop run at Hastings Lake drew more than 100 members of the community as a final stepping stone as they prepare for the 10K race in Lincoln later this month and continue here in Hastings next year.
The organization is always looking for more coaches. For more information about the program visit http://www.girlsontherunofnebraska.com/
And if you have ideas for our Celebrate Youth segment email us at email@example.com.
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