At 6 o’clock this morning, the inaugural members of the Boston chapter of Back on My Feet had their first official run. The three BOMF teams were made up of members experiencing homelessness and volunteers, all of whom ran one mile together starting at Boston Common. Seeing everyone run off together was so inspiring.
After the inaugural run of the Boston chapter, everyone met for “Breakfast in Your Sneakers” at the Copley Marriott downtown. The attire for the event was business with sneakers. Of course, I rocked mine. I love any excuse to wear sneakers (or flip flops)! 😉
More than 400 people attended the kick-off event this morning.
I’m not going to lie, I LOVE my new BOMF water bottle!
For breakfast, I enjoyed fresh fruit and juice.
Lots of coffee!
And eggs with asparagus, fried mashed potatoes, a toasted tomato, and some egg custard. I pretty much ate the entire portion.
I received a number of questions and comments about how Back on My Feet works, so here’s what I learned this morning:
Back on My Feet is a “strategically structured program that uses running as a vehicle to teach critical work and life skills” to people living in homeless shelters. Through their own dedication and commitment to running, BOMF members progress to advanced stages of the program, which offer connections to job training, educational scholarships, and housing assistance. BOMF is more than just running, but, at the same time, it’s also the basis of the program.
Back on My Feet runs three days a week at 5:45 AM, and all members are required to attend every run (unless he/she has an excused absence). After 30 days of participation with BOMF, those members with 90% attendance or better move into the Next Steps phase, where they work with the staff to determine the next step in their life. Then BOMF helps their members find employment, job training, and educational opportunities to help them get back on their feet.
You can read all of the programming details here.
Anne Mahlum, the founder and president of BOMF, spoke at the event. Her talk was heart-felt and truly inspiring. You could tell that she is really passionate about this organization.
If you would like to support the new Boston chapter of Back on My Feet, please vote for me in the Stonyfield Blogger Barnstorming Tour contest. If I am selected, BOMF will receive $5,000, which will help put almost 3 members through their program. If you’re curious how the money will be spent, BOMF breaks down the cost per member on their website.
After the BOMF breakfast, I walked through the Public Gardens to my next event of the day, which may or may not involved having lunch with Gary Hirshberg, the CE-Yo of Stonyfield. Doesn’t that seem like a sign that you should vote for me?! 😉
I love these purple flowers!
What a day! Lunch recap coming soon!