The Inclusion in Motion team invites community to join them at Band on the Run

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Main photo: Community Living Huntsville’s Team Inclusion in Motion is for everyone. Some of the people who will be supporting the organization by walking or running in the annual Band on the Run or by dying their hair in the Community Living colours of blue and green are (from left) Dione Schumacher, Angela Deemert, Lisa DuPerre, David Mooney, Matt Huddlestone, Diane Lupton, Kevin Rows, Camille Barr, Kim Thompson, Andrea Johnston, Cheryl Nelson, Cherryll Demaine, Clarence Jenkins, and Rosemary McGuire-Herman.

For the third year in a row, the Inclusion in Motion team will be participating in the annual Band on the Run road race. The group includes Community Living Huntsville (CLH) clients, staff and board members, as well as anyone from the larger community who wants to get involved in support of a good cause.

“It’s an incredible thing to see some of these people with challenges, when they finish the 5k how proud they are,” says Kim Thompson, the group’s volunteer coach. “I love this more than Christmas, it’s so much fun to watch. It’s such an accomplishment. For some people, 5k is nothing but for others it’s a huge deal.”

Starting in January, the Inclusion in Motion team heads to the track at the Don Lough Arena every Monday at 4:30 p.m. to start preparing for the event. When the weather gets nicer, they’ll start training on the track at Conroy Park, and twice in the weeks leading up to the race they’ll walk the actual route so that everyone can get a feel for it. Most will walk 5k on the day of the race, although some will do some running.

“We’d love for more to join our team,” says CLH staff member Andrea Johnston. That could mean training with them every Monday, or simply signing up as part of the team to support them on race day. Also watch for the CLH hair dye challenge again this year—last year community members temporarily dyed their hair in the organization’s colours of green and blue just before Band on the Run to show their support.

All of the fundraising done at Band on the Run, so named for the bands that line the race route to spur the runners and walkers on, supports Community Living Huntsville. So far, just over $3,000 of the $10,000 goal has been raised by participants signed up for the 2019 event. If you’re not participating but still want to support CLH, you can make a pledge for an individual participant, or you can make a general donation here.

To sign up for Band on the Run either as a member of Inclusion in Motion or on your own—the team does the 5k run/walk, or you can run 10k or a half-marathon and there’s a 1k race just for kids, too—visit bandontherun.ca. Almost 800 people have signed up for the event so far.

“This is a great opportunity for community to come together for a great cause,” says Suzanne Willett, interim executive director at Community Living Huntsville. “Everybody wants a sense of belonging—why not come out and join Inclusion in Motion and meet some new people and get some exercise while you’re at it?”

And if you want to help spread the word about inclusion, Willett invites anyone interested to either join a Celebrating Inclusion Tour or consider hosting one for a group of around 10 at CLH, or at home, work or wherever your group gathers.

For more information about Community Living Huntsville, visit clhuntsville.ca.

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