Girls on the Run program in need of more coaches

Girls on the Run Sunrise Side is seeking volunteer coaches for its spring 2014 season. GOTR, an influential program for girls, incorporates self-esteem, teamwork and physical activity into one program.

Although the program trains for a 5K, it is not a running program. GOTR Sunrise Side is off to a great start but still needs assistance to help fill the remaining coach positions.

Since its local inception in March 2010, the program has helped close to 500 girls. GOTR Sunrise Side relies on volunteers to help coach the 10-week, 20-lesson program. While the coaches get to experience the positive transformations of the girls first-hand, it is often the coaches who say they were transformed the most.

Coaches work directly with third-fifth or sixth-eighth grade girls, teaching them healthy habits and training them for the fun 5K run. Each team consists of 2-3 coaches and 8-15 girls.

A GOTR curriculum guides the sessions, so a strong knowledge of running is not a requirement. Coaches must be 18 years or older and available right after-school from 4-5:30 p.m. for elementary and 2:30-4 p.m. for junior high.

The spring 2014 season meets twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays, right after-school for about an hour and a half. The program starts the week of March 17, 2014 and goes until May 29, 2014 with the celebratory 5K on May 31.

Schools currently needing coaches are Sanborn, Wilson, Hinks and Thunder Bay Junior High. Anyone interested in becoming a coach, call Cathy Goike at 358-7970 or

A coaches kick off planned for February 2014.