GOTR-West Michigan serves girls 8-13, throughout Kent, Muskegon, and Ottawa Counties. Since 2004, GOTR-WM has positively impacted the health of 28,825 girls. Girls, already prone to poor social-emotional outcomes and heightened rates of physical inactivity, face growing, unique and critical challenges following COVID-19. Through the support of trained, caring volunteer coaches, predominantly female, GOTR strengthens the vision of a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams. GOTR intentionally engages coaches who reflect the diversity of participants. A recent evaluation showed 98% formed positive relationships with participants.
Girls on the Run shares your commitment of to positively impact the lives of youth in underserved communities throughout West Michigan. It carries out this responsibility ensuring accessibility to girls of the highest economic need. No participant is turned away due to inability to pay, and actively seek out high-need communities and programming sites to serve to ensure girls who need the program the most are being reached. Further underscoring the organization’s dedication to removing barriers, GOTR-WM provided $160,816 in financial assistance in the spring of 2023 to ensure every girl that is eager to participate has the opportunity.
Maya, a GOTR participant, shared that Girls on the Run helped her with peer pressure, sharing that before the program she “had to choose between things that I didn’t know was right or wrong, and now I’m thinking about things very carefully and it’s actually helping me. I think about what could happen, and what could happen with the other thing, and I choose the one that sounds not so bad.” This lesson is central to the mission of Girls on the Run. Throughout the program participants explore and discuss their own beliefs around experiences and challenges girls face at this age. They develop important strategies and skills to help them navigate life experiences such as standing up to peer pressure, making critical decisions, being intentional about choosing friendships, identifying and handling both comfortable and uncomfortable emotions, and demonstrating respect and responsibility towards themselves and others.
Thank you for your gift to help each girl learn that they are empowered to make decisions and have a voice to make change in all that they do. Your support means everything to changing the lives of girls across West Michigan.