Girls on the Run of Greater Mankato
We Inspire Girls
to be joyful, healthy & confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.
Girls on the Run is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams.
Girls on the Run of Greater Mankato is an Affiliate council of Girls on the Run International, which has a network of over 200 councils across 50 states and the District of Columbia. Girls on the Run of Greater Mankato was established in 2007 to serve girls in the Greater Mankato community.
Girls on the Run International was established in 1996 in Charlotte, North Carolina by Molly Barker. What started with thirteen girls in one school has grown to over 200 councils. With the help of almost 100,000 volunteers, Girls on the Run served nearly 180,000 girls in 2015, including our millionth girl! Girls on the Run continues to grow and currently hosts more than 350 end-of-season 5k events across the United States, making the Girls on the Run 5k series the largest in the country. Girls on the Run has also expanded to include middle school girls through Heart & Sole, a program dedicated to the unique needs of adolescent girls.
We inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.
We envision a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams.
Girls on the Run/Heart & Sole honors its core values. We strive to:
Recognize our power and responsibility to be intentional in our decision making
Embrace our differences and find strength in our connectedness
Express joy, optimism and gratitude through our words, thoughts and actions
Nurture our physical, emotional and spiritual health
Lead with an open heart and assume positive intent
Stand up for ourselves and others
What We Do
At Girls on the Run we inspire girls to recognize their inner strength and celebrate what makes them one of a kind. Trained coaches lead small teams through our research-based curricula which includes dynamic discussions, activities and running games. Over the course of the ten-week program, girls develop essential skills to help them navigate their worlds and establish a lifetime appreciation for health and fitness. The program culminates with girls positively impacting their communities through a service project and being physically and emotionally prepared to complete a celebratory 5k event. .
Why It Matters
Girls face social pressures and conflicting messages about how they should act and who they should be. Studies show that by adolescence, girls' confidence drops about twice as much as boys'. Friendships become more complicated and challenging, girls' perception of their academic ability declines, the likelihood of anxiety and depression increases and participation in physical activity plummets.
It doesn't have to be this way.
We believe that every girl is inherently full of power and potential. By knowing they are the leaders of their lives, these are the girls who will change the world.
What Girls Learn
Confidence - Lessons are designed to build girls' self-worth and help them feel greater confidence in who they are. Activities help girls recognize their personal strengths and teach them how to stand up for themselves and others.
Character - By gaining awareness of the power they possess to make intentional decisions, girls learn to choose positive actions which demonstrate respect and responsibility towards themselves and others.
Care - Throughout each season, girls learn to respond to others and themselves with care and compassion. Lessons and activities further develop their abilities to sympathize and empathize both within and beyond their social groups.
Connections - Girls on the Run lessons focus on cooperative skills and team building through a positive group setting. Girls learn firsthand how to create positive connections with parents and caregivers, teachers, peers and their communities.
Competence - Our program provides skill-building experiences to nurture girls' physical, social and emotional competencies that they apply in other areas of their lives such as home, school, and in the neighborhood. Completing a 5k at the end of the season gives them a tangible opportunity to apply all that they have learned.
Contribution - When girls develop and strengthen these life skills, they can thrive. More importantly, they can then develop a final skill: CONTRIBUTION. Girls on the Run inspires girls to build lives of purpose and to make a meaningful contribution to community and society. This comes to life through a key element of the curricula when each team creates and executes a community service project.
Interested in starting a site?
Girls on the Run utilizes trained, volunteer coach mentors from our local area. These volunteers serve as role models to the girls throughout the 10-12 week program. A coach mentor is an individual 18 years of age or older, male or female, who lead lessons in empowerment, healthy eating, gossiping, bullying, friendship, body image, media influence, goal setting and believing in yourself. Running experience is not required.
If interested in becoming a volunteer Girls on the Run coach mentor please see our volunteer page.
Girls on the Run International Merchandise Store - Please enter our Council Code MN-4-273 at Check Out.
YWCA Mankato ♦ 127 S 2nd St, Suite 200 ♦ Mankato, MN 56001
Thank you to our Program Supporters