For the third year in a row, Ruby Drive Elementary School has held an after school program called Girls on the Run. Girls on the Run, a nonprofit organization, inspires girls to recognize their inner strength and celebrate what makes them one of a kind. Trained coaches lead small teams through research-based curricula which includes dynamic discussions, activities, and running games.
Over the course of the ten-week program, girls in 4th through 6th grade develop essential skills to help them navigate their worlds and establish a lifetime appreciation for health and fitness. The program culminates with girls positively impacting their communities through a service project and being physically and emotionally prepared to complete a celebratory 5K event. Girls in the program receive a t-shirt, water bottle, and a brand new pair of Asics running shoes.
This year, 17 Ruby Drive students participated in the program. Many of the girls who are on the team now were a part of Girls On the Run the very first year it was offered at Ruby Drive when they were just 3rd graders.
Miranda Rios, a 5th grader, has participated in the program every year it has been offered.
“I keep signing up because it’s more than just running. Girls on the Run also teaches me valuable skills I can use in the real world like how to handle bullying. I also like being part of a team,” Rios shared.
Team members this year include 4th graders Jazmin De Leon, Janessa Duran, Melanie Garneri, Jayden Kensicki; 5th graders Juliette Castrejon, Valerie Galvan, Evelyn Gamboa, Emily Garneri, Marama Gonzalez, Brittany Guerrero, Adriana Lopez, Marisol Ortiz, Alicia Ramirez, and Miranda Rios; and 6th graders Gianna Cruz, Jade Figueroa, and Jaleen Figueroa.
Teachers Katherine Burrows and Sofia Vander Kooy-Hervey and community volunteers Teryn Apple, Jordyn Hertherington, and Ilene Minnich coached the girls after school twice a week. The final 5k was held on December 9 in Irvine. Congratulations to all Ruby Drive Cougars on another fantastic season!