Mid-Missouri girls running for mental health

3 years 2 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, September 23 2014 Sep 23, 2014 Tuesday, September 23, 2014 5:14:00 PM CDT September 23, 2014 in News
By: Brea Love, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Twenty girls and their coaches are training for a 5K in a program built to "to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy, and confident"

These runners will train twice a week for ten weeks taking in the things they've learned in order to cross a finishline and fufill a goal.

"I see kids everyday who are struggling with things that are outside of their control, things that are going on outside of school or inside of school that affect how they see themselves or how they get along with others. Sometimes they can feel very defeated by those things," Counselor Anita Ellis said. "Just to see them gain in their confidence and the best part is at the end, we all will cross that finish line at that 5k, no matter how long it takes us to do it, when they do that in November its priceless."

Heart of Missouri Girls on the Run started their fall season September 8th and works as a local resource for young girls facing difficult situations.

"Our ten week curriculum features a lot of topics for girls including positive self talk, addressing bullies, awareness of media messages, and throughout the 10 weeks we train our bodies physically and emotionally to complete a 5K," Director Sara Loveless said.

The program utilizes coaches ranging from college-aged women to school faculty members who teach the lessons and run along side the girls. The number of girls per program is capped at 20 to allow the coaches one on one mentoring time with each of the girls.

Former Coach Lauren Bridgewater remembered when she helped a girl she felt needed extra attention. She explained how one of her runners had been completely defiant since the start of the season. She would not follow directions, she said inappropriate things, and she was rude to the other girls in the program. One afternoon after the runner had an explosive tantrum Bridgewater took her outside to talk one on one.

Once she was away from the group she broke down and told Bridgewater she was being bullied at school, had problems at home, and confessed she didn't like herself. Bridgewater was able to mentor her and introduce her to resources within the school. She said by the end of the season her runner had completely turned around. Bridgewater said she thinks its hard for children to recognize poor mental health.

"I don't think people pay attention to it as much because they can't communicate it as well. They don't know how," Bridgewater said. "They sometimes forget and go play. But still in the back of their minds have some problems going on. They're better at hiding it because they have less responsibilities. You can't see them struggling to get things done but really there is a struggle."

"Girls on the run is a transformational organization that empowers girls to recognize their voices and recognize the beauty of their voice," Loveless explained. 

At the beginning of a Girls on the Run practice, the girls meet in a classroom setting, sitting cross legged, in a circle, surrounded by friends and coaches giving them support. The coaches teach lessons, the girls discuss them, they all stretch, and then hit the pavement to practice running.

The 127 page curriculum Girls on the Run incorporates focuses on 6 core values:

• Recognize our power and responsibility to be intentional in our decision making
• Embrace our differences and find strength in our connectedness
• Express joy, optimism and gratitude through our words, thoughts and actions
• Nurture our physical, emotional and spiritual health
• Lead with an open heart and assume positive intent
• Stand up for ourselves and others

Board members want the girls to take the lessons they learn during this time and apply them to their everyday experiences. Girls on the run works to improve mental health by recognizing and eliminating bullies.

"Mental health can a lot of time be something that's shameful or swept under the rug and I would like to see that change just in general but for kids bullying starts as soon as they meet other children," Board Chair Jennifer Coffman said. "Other problems at home, or problems with relatives, or problems with teachers that all happens just as soon as they are put in a social situation. We have to equip our children. They need to know how to deal with bullies. They also need to know what a bully looks like, they might be being a bully and not even realize it."

Mid Missouri girls in the program will accomplish their goal on Stankowski Field November 15th.

There are 10 sites in Columbia where elementary girls can get involved to view those click here.

 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Power was restored to 1,922 Columbia customers, according to Columbia Water & Light. The outage affected customers... More >>
47 minutes ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 10:35:00 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
CAPE GIRARDEAU (AP) — A Cape Girardeau man will likely spend the rest of his life in prison for shooting... More >>
3 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 8:00:30 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Three years after picking up a disc for the first time, Cynthia Riccotti is thriving in her quest... More >>
4 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 6:25:00 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
TIPTON - A family is trying to recover after losing everything in a house fire, and with help from the... More >>
6 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 5:20:00 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
BOONE COUNTY - A boil advisory is in affect for Water Supply District No. 10 in Boone County. According... More >>
6 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 5:18:00 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - A Kansas City woman has been arrested in connection with a fatal car crash in Camden County... More >>
6 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 4:48:00 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Area educators are opening up the topic of teen suicide for discussion after seeing deaths rise... More >>
7 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 4:07:38 PM CST December 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The first ever "Christmas Countdown" Sunday is giving Jefferson City an opportunity for some last minute Christmas... More >>
14 hours ago Sunday, December 17 2017 Dec 17, 2017 Sunday, December 17, 2017 9:21:00 AM CST December 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — Police say they have arrested a man charged in an August quadruple homicide that occurred in... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 11:15:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
NEW BLOOMFIELD - A two-vehicle car wreck Saturday left one dead and two others injured, according to the Missouri State... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 8:15:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - An event in Columbia today addressed the prevalence of gun violence and misuse of firearms by offering gift... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 8:04:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – A six-year-old held a hot chocolate stand Saturday outside of a Hy-Vee in Jefferson City to help two... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 6:51:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Wyss Medical Foundation donated $2 million to the Missouri Orthapaedic Institute for the work of lead orthopaedic... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 5:05:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - On Friday, the Columbia Police Department inducted eight new recruits, the largest class of officers in years. ... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 4:03:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – A new roundabout may be coming to Columbia on one intersection that may cause drivers trouble. The... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 3:55:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
JACKSONVILLE - An estimated 400 people attended a wreath laying ceremony Saturday at the Jacksonville State Veterans Cemetery. It... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 3:31:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Graduation day is long awaited by many and Amy Kiso Bledsoe is no exception. Bledsoe was... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 2:47:00 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — As Missouri struggles with the epidemic of opioid abuse, no place in the state has been... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 16 2017 Dec 16, 2017 Saturday, December 16, 2017 1:10:14 PM CST December 16, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 45°
12am 44°
1am 43°
2am 42°
3am 42°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

11:05p
Sports Extra with Chris Gervino
11:35p
The Simpsons
12:05a
Inside Edition
11:00p
Adventure Scouts
1:00a
Family Guy
1:30a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
7:00p
The Christmas Bunny
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Family Guy