Health Team

Joyner races to raise funds and fitness level

Posted March 22, 2012 5:55 p.m. EDT
Updated March 22, 2012 7:50 p.m. EDT

— A Raleigh elementary school is using a unique event to raise money for school supplies and raise awareness of the importance of physical fitness.

Instead of selling fruit or baked goods, the third graders at Joyner Elementary are paying $15 each to participate in something fun and energetic that might just lead to a more healthy lifestyle.

During the month of March, students signed up for a marathon of change. They committed to 20 minutes of exercise and 20 minutes of reading each day and to make healthy food choices for 25 days in a row. The event culminates Sunday with the schools first 5K.

Student Sam Perez boiled it all down.

"It's important, because it helps us keep healthy, and it raises money for supplies for teachers. That’s why we do this really."

Students and teachers are training for the race together.

"We expected 30 to 35 kids. We got 125 to 150, and they’ve been coming every week for six weeks," said teacher Melanie Jones.

She is invested in seeing her students do well, and she has a personal motive as well. 

"As a mother of three girls, this brings some girl power, and that’s good," she said. "It also helps the PE teachers who really need the help."