Jore: Girls on the Run shows girls they matter

Girls on the Run works to be inclusive, accommodate all involved

Recently, I had the privilege of attending my first Girls on the Run 5K race.

Much more than a running program, Girls on the Run inspires girls in third through eighth grades to recognize their inner strength and celebrate what makes them one of a kind. Trained coaches lead small teams through a 10-week curriculum that includes dynamic discussions, activities and fun running games. 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.


It was an amazing day! Despite the misty rain and wind, the air was buzzing with excitement. More than 600 people including Girls on the Run participants, coaches, parents, friends, running buddies and community runners filled the parking lot of Celebree Learning Center in Westminster on June 3. This end-of-season event is so much more than just a 5K; it’s a celebration of the hard work the girls put in for the past 10 weeks. It was a chance for them to celebrate who they are.

I volunteered to help where needed and I was requested to oversee the photo booth where girls, their teams, and their families gathered to take pictures after they crossed the finish line. I quickly learned that this was the most privileged place at the race.

What a joy to ask over and over if I can grab a camera so a proud mom or dad could jump in and get their picture taken with their girl on the run. Beautiful families and friends, all celebrating their daughters, communicating with pride that because you conquered a 5K, you can conquer the world.

All of a sudden, color doesn’t matter, size doesn’t matter, wealth doesn’t matter, even athleticism doesn’t matter.

That girl matters.

Her self-confidence matters. Her camaraderie with her teammates matters. Her contribution to the world matters.

So I watched all of these different kinds of girls throw their arms around each other and smile. I saw mommies and coaches put on silly glasses and fake lips and pose for a picture with their arms around their girl. I saw daddies and uncles stoop low to be cheek to cheek in grins for their girl. I saw entire families and teams stand together wearing their race bibs, having fought step by step encouraging each girl to cross that finish line.

I saw pride. I saw confidence. I saw school principals and teachers, neighbors and grandparents. And I got to touch them all on the shoulder and ask if I could celebrate with them, to help them capture this moment. I got to be one more voice in a girls’ life that said, “Way to go.”

I truly believe that I had the most privileged place at the race. What an amazing day! What an amazing organization! Many thanks to all the volunteers who make this program possible and to the Carroll County community for such a great turnout to support the young girls in our area! Let’s all meet back here for the next Girls on the Run race day in Carroll County on Dec. 2, 2018.

Thanks for letting me be a part of your daughter’s day!

Lynn Jore is the Carroll County Coordinator for Girls on the Run. To learn more about the program, including how to register a girl or get involved, visit