Elementary School Walkathon Raises $18,500 for Ukraine

The students of Captain Gilmer Christian School in Fletcher, North Carolina held a school-wide walkathon in March and raised $18,500 for those affected by the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis. 

The crisis hit close to home for many of the school’s students.

“Ten percent of our student body has either Ukrainian or Russian family members,” said the school’s principal Sarah Wilson. “They were understandably upset and praying for their friends and family. We decided to do a prayer walk. One of our teachers mentioned that we should do something more. So, the idea for a walkathon was born.”

All of the school’s 169 students participated in the walkathon, receiving donations from family and friends who pledged their support for each mile walked. One first grader was determined to make the most of a donor’s $50 per lap pledge and completed 15 laps! Another student from the seventh grade class jogged the entire hour and managed to complete 25 laps.

Support for the walkathon also came from the local community. A grocery store donated fruit and water for refreshment stations, senior citizens donated and joined the walk, and some with close connections to Ukraine attended. 

“It is nice to know that if my family came here, the school would welcome their children,” said one man whose family is in Ukraine.

The $18,500 donation raised by the school will help ADRA continue to provide emergency assistance to those who have been displaced by the Ukrainian crisis. 

“We are grateful to the children, parents, faculty, and staff of Captain Gilmer Christian School for the unwavering support for the people of Ukraine” says Jennifer Tyner, senior director of marketing and supporter engagement for ADRA. “Your contributions will address the urgent needs of the most vulnerable children and families. ADRA continues to provide shelter, food, water, lifesaving supplies, cash vouchers, and transportation to refugee moms and youth that have fled the conflict, and displaced residents inside Ukraine. Thank you for your donations and prayers. You truly are the hands and hugs of Jesus.”

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About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency is the international humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church serving in 118 countries. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. ADRA’s purpose is to serve humanity so all may live as God intended.

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