5k in Botkins to benefit Nicaraguan special needs organization


By Blythe Alspaugh - balspaugh@sidneydailynews.com



BOTKINS—A 5K to benefit Familias Especiales, an organization based out of Nicaragua, will be held Saturday, Aug. 10 at Botkins Community Park.

New to the 5K is the theme of a color run, decided in part to connect the colorful culture of Nicaragua with the United States.

“It just seemed appropriate,” Chelsea Freisthler, Twinning coordinator for Petersberg Parishes, said. “Celebrations in Nicaragua are colorful and lots of fun, and we just wanted to mimick what we saw.”

Familias Especiales was started in 1996 in Matagalpa, Nicaragua, by Sister Rebecca Trujillo, in order to serve local families with special needs and provide services to help with the development of children with special needs within the community. In the over 20 years that Familias Especiales has been around, they have built a school with handicapped access and created work programs for children with special needs when they graduate, including a yogurt factory and a recycling center. Familias Especiales advocates for accessibility and takes care of any need that seems to present itself due to lack of government funding. Due to the ongoing political crisis in Nicaragua, Familias Especiales is unable to hold their annual 5K to raise money for these programs, something that Freisthler hopes the 5K can supplement.

“This is their main source of funding,” Freisthler said. “Last year we raised $1,8oo. This year’s goal is $2,500.”

Something special about this years’ 5K is that Sister Rebecca will be in attendance. She will be presenting awards at the 5K that have been hand crafted by artists with Familias Especiales, and sharing the story behind their cause.

“It will be extra special to have her there,” Freisthler said.

Registration for the 5K begins at 7:30 a.m. and the race begins at 8:30 a.m. Registration fees are $20 and all proceeds go to benefit Familias Especiales.

By Blythe Alspaugh

balspaugh@sidneydailynews.com

Reach the writer at 937-538-4825

Reach the writer at 937-538-4825