Atlanta - January 16, 2020 - By art of preparation, race day leaves Atlanta Track Club with extras: T-shirts, number bibs, water bottles and even food. Most of which will be used for the next event or even the next, but some supplies, like fresh fruit, are short-lived.
For staff members, it seems like a no-brainer to send these timely items to the best home where they can be used for the greater good. Rich Kenah, Executive Director of the Track Club, said giving back to community partners is the right thing to do.
"As Atlanta Track Club works towards the vision of a healthier Atlanta, supporting the communities in which we run is critically important," said Kenah. "This includes everyone from Parks and Recreation to faith-based organizations."
After the biggest 2020 Resolution Run 5K, Mile and Dash to date, the Club was bursting at the seams with more than a thousand leftover apples. Jennifer Akor, Coordinator of Volunteer Services at the Club, has taken leftover snacks to her church, Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, but this time, Akor recognized a way to make a bigger impact.
"We've been able to take crackers and chips after a race, but fresh fruit is a big treat," said Akor.
Every Tuesday and Thursday, the Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church feeds more than 250 people who are in need. Shortly after the 2020 Resolution Run, Akor made the special delivery.
"They are going to hand out the apples and also share the rest with some of the other churches and partners in the community."
Head Coordinator of Lourdes Lunch, Thayes Sturgis, said it's rare to find fresh fruit in their cafeteria. It made a donation like this exceptional.
"We don't turn anyone away," said Sturgis. "We serve one meat, one starch and a vegetable. Then, water, tea or hot coffee if it's cold outside."
Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church volunteers each year as the mile four water station for thousands of runners during the Publix Atlanta Marathon and Half Marathon in March making this donation even more purposeful.
"The timing couldn't be better to give back to Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church who plays a significant role in our upcoming Publix Atlanta Marathon and Half Marathon," Kenah said. "We simply couldn't do what we do without the thousands of volunteers who support our races."
The Club showed their gratitude to an organization who serves as one of their greatest fans come race day. Lourdes Lunch equally shared their appreciation.
"We needed this," Sturgis said. "It means we can go beyond these grounds and help and serve others."