Running for Operation Hope

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By Kevin Smith
For the Progressive Journal


Around 30 runners and walkers turned out for the first Back-to-School 5K Run/Walk on Aug. 12 where Operation Hope Community Programs distributed backpacks and school supplies to more than 100 local children.
“We wanted to encourage adults and children to be physically active and have community involvement,” said Jeff Blakeney of Operation Hope. “We also wanted to raise funds to begin building an Operation Hope Community Scholarship Fund. Operation Hope desires to improve the lives of children by mentoring them on the importance of education, physical fitness, literacy and self-esteem. We use sports, healthful recreation and community involvement.”
Mt. Calvary Baptist Church partnered with Operation Hope to supply the backpacks and supplies, as well as many of the volunteers.
“By being in a positive atmosphere of giving and love, you never know how that may meaningfully impact a child,” Blakeney said.
Boys’ winners were: 1. EJ Threatt, 2. Tevin Cannon, 3. Edgar Guzman. Girls’ winners were: 1. Kirsten Dale, 2. Lizzie Outlaw. Jermaine Johnson was first in the adult division.
For information on Operation Hope go to their Facebook page, or Instagram @operationhope16, Operation Hope’s is e-mail is  operationhope16@gmail.com.