The Fifth Annual Fun Run Toward Sustainability is coming to the State Botanical Gardens on Saturday, March 25 at 9 a.m. to bring awareness to the efforts students and Athens locals can do to maintain a sustainable lifestyle.
“It’s about taking better care of our earth,” said Kevin Fox, a co-founder of the Small Dreams Foundation.
Fox said the Small Dreams Foundation was created to honor his sister and UGA alumna Brittney Fox Watts, who passed away in 2011. Watts was known for trying to live sustainably as well as for her love of traveling.
The Foundation partners with schools across Georgia and gives grants to those working on sustainability projects, such as butterfly gardens or school gardens. They also help local communities by participating in park clean-ups around the state.
In the past, they’ve partnered with the Office of Sustainability to create a bike-share program for UGA students called Bulldog Bikes.
Proceeds from the fun run will be allocated to the Brittney Fox Watts Endowment for Study Abroad in Sustainability. The scholarship is awarded to two students who want to travel and build sustainable lifestyles within their communities.
“[The scholarship] provides $500 to students who are passionate about travel, experiencing different cultures and embracing sustainable practices to address the health and well-being of individuals and communities around the globe,” said Andrew Lentini, a communications and outreach coordinator for the Office of Sustainability.
Visual education stations will be set up throughout the race, teaching participants about sustainable activities such as composting and collecting water. These include physical examples, such as rain barrels for collecting water and posters with more detailed information about sustainable activities.
“[They] show different things you can do to practice more sustainable living,” Fox said. “It’s really great for all ages.”
The 3.1 mile fun run has many eco-friendly aspects to it, such as recyclable race bibs, paperless registration and a station to recycle old tennis shoes.
“Sustainability doesn't come in one shape or form,” said Megan Bens, an events intern. “There are many facets to sustainability and there is one for everybody to participate and make an impact.”
Living sustainably doesn’t have to be difficult. Eating and buying locally-grown food, biking to class and using reusable grocery bags and cups are just some of the ways that students can practice sustainability in their day-to-day lives.
“We should all recognize that small actions add up,” Lentini said. “Behaviors as small as turning off the lights in a room can save dollars as well as natural resources.”
Tickets are $20–$30, and the price includes a T-shirt for the race.
Click here you're if interested in registering for the race.