Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) held its first Walk in My Shoes 5K Poverty Awareness Run/Walk on September 7, 2019, with the racecourse beginning at the Martin Head Start Center located in downtown Jackson. Participants say it was a beautiful course that was fun to run. It went through the historic Farish Street district over to Midtown Head Start Center, which incidentally was the midpoint, and then ended where it began, back at the Martin Head Start Center. Race day began at 6:00 a.m. and ended at 8:30 a.m. with an awards ceremony.
The event was created to bring awareness to the insufficiencies some Hinds County residents and communities face concerning family and economic security. Proceeds from the race will support the programs and services offered by HCHRA to provided families with opportunities and resources to address their unique needs for emergency assistance, food, housing, health, education, and/or job development.
Not only did the 5K run/walk create greater awareness about the services and opportunities HCHRA provides to the community, it also got Agency employees, community partners, friends and families with children of all ages involved. Trophies and “braggin’ rights” were given to the team with the most miles, the one with the loudest/craziest outfits, and the team with the most HCHRA spirit, and awards were given to the fastest male and female in each age category ranging from 7 to 60, and above!
“Race organizers told us that we shouldn’t expect too much during our first year,” said Roger Lutrell, HCHRA’s vice president for Planning and Development. “They told us if we get 40 people to participate, we’d be doing well, and if we got 60, we would be doing really well. Needless to say, we are ecstatic about the turnout.” Over 100 people participated in the race as either individuals or teams, all vying to beat the clock and promote health and well-being. The race was even more success due to the generous support of sponsors. Mississippi Group Marketing, the largest donor, served as the finish line sponsor. Other sponsors included Jackson Area Federal Credit Union, Covington Electric and Phelps Dunbar, Waterview Casino & Hotel, and Atmos Energy.
“We appreciate every employee and supporter who got involved to help support our cause and mission to foster self-sufficiency for the clients we serve,” said HCHRA President and CEO Kenn Cockrell. “We look forward to greater participation next year and making an even greater impact in the community.”