For the second consecutive year, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma has partnered with the YMCA Tulsa again this year for the Kids 5K Training Program. The YMCA Tulsa hosts the six-week program that is designed to prepare local children for the 5K race set for Saturday, Nov. 17 during the Williams Route 66 Marathon weekend. Blue Cross sponsors 300 kids in the 5K training activities who are already involved in YMCA programs. Every child that completes the program will have the opportunity to run in the 5K on Nov. 17.
This year, Blue Cross wanted to go a step further with the program and encourage kids to work hard and exemplify the four core principles of the YMCA: Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility. Blue Cross offered a brand new pair of shoes for two participants who showed the most character and determination during the six-week program. In addition, Blue Cross employees attended a few of the training sessions to run with the kids along the course and help the YMCA teach the ideals of hard work and achievement. Blaze the Braggin’ Blue Dragon, Blue Cross’ health mascot, also came out to break a sweat with the kids.
Many of the kids in the program are excited to experience that sense of achievement. During one of the training sessions, one of the kids exclaimed, “I can’t wait to run with everyone in my first race ever!”
Since participating in the program, many of the students have improved in their classes and increased interaction with the teachers and other students.