Meet Sarah!

Meet Sarah!

I first learned about Girls on the Run through my husband’s high school friend Melissa Fagersten who, along with two other amazing ladies, was in the process of bringing the program to Sparta. As she described the program her passion for Girls on the Run was contagious, I instantly wanted to become involved.  As an avid runner I have picked up confidence and really grown personal through the sport and I love the idea of introducing running as a way to help girls grow into strong, confident young women with respect for themselves and others.

My first Girls on the Run 5K is a day I won’t forget. I was responsible for the water station along the course. I was provided a fun group of really enthusiastic volunteers who handed out water while cheering and screaming for every runner throughout the event.  As the girls raced by I was struck by the looks of dedication, hard work, sheer joy, and most of all pride on their faces. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like it. Watching them interact with their running partners, cheer on and encourage the other girls was really inspirational. After that first race I knew Girls on the Run was something I wanted to get more involved in.

I was given the opportunity to volunteer on the course at the Fall 5K that following November. The fall event is only open to the program girls and their running partners, for this reason it has a much more personal feel. The bonds the girls had formed with each other and the coaches were even more evident. Girls that had finished the race were running back to support their team mates, coaches cheering for their girls from the finish line, placing medals around the girl’s necks with big hugs as they finished their race. I was again inspired and asked Melissa, Vikki and Deb to give me more to do. They asked me to become the Volunteer Coordinator for the following spring event, and I jumped at the opportunity. I attended monthly meetings, recruited and organized all volunteer positions. I enjoyed communicating with the volunteers, all of which were excited for the upcoming event and even made suggestions such as creating cheer signs ahead of time to make the day even better for the GOTR girls. I sadly had to miss the Spring 5K but getting involved with the inner workings of event preparations knowing what the day itself would be like was a lot of fun.

I am currently working the race committee gearing up for the 3rd Annual Girls on the Run Spring 5K and Lake Mohawk Challenge. The program is growing and we are expanding to communities around North Jersey, including my hometown of Vernon which I am very excited about!

It’s amazing to see what the small program that started in Sparta 3 short years ago has become, I am proud to say I have been a very small part of its great success. I am thankful for the opportunities Girls on the Run has provided me; to become involved in my new community, to give back in a way I truly connect with and I feel makes a huge impact, as well  to meet so many inspiring people. I suspect I have received much more from this program than I have put into it.

Sarah's iPhone Photos end 2-2-14 1544 (1)