Volunteer Corner: Jennifer Bossin
October 21, 2008
Tell me about your volunteer experience.
It’s been 16 months since I opened Girls on the Run – Sierras, a local non-profit organization that helps prepare little girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living. I have been volunteering full time ever since. We now have more than 85 volunteers each season.
Have you done volunteer work at any other organization?
Yes. I have been doing volunteer work for our local Slow Foods Lake Tahoe organization, for the Truckee Tahoe Humane Society and the Tahoe Luna Chix Breast Cancer events.
How many girls are now enrolled in “Girls on the Run” Nevada County? and nationally?
We have approximately 80 girls registered in Girls on the Run – Sierras throughout six schools within the TTUSD system who range from 3rd – 8th grade. We are currently offering programs in Truckee, Tahoe City and Kings Beach. Girls on the Run – International, our parent organization now has more than 160 councils (just like ours) across the U.S. and Canada, in total we serve more than 130,000 girls per year with our self-esteem and healthy living curriculum.
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In what ways have those girls improved or been helped by the program?
Girls on the Run hopes to improve our local statistics of juvenile delinquency, substance abuse and teen-pregnancy rates. Our surveys reveal girls who attend Girls on the Run programs are less likely to involve themselves in such risky adolescent behaviors as mentioned above, by assisting little girls to understand their own self-worth, values and meaning.
What is your main responsibility as the council director and head coach?
My responsibilities include running the day-to-day business, training the coaching staff, recruiting volunteers, liaising with the schools and PTO groups, fund-raising, grant writing and just about anything else to grow this great little business.
How many events does “Girls on the Run” promote during the year, and what’s the next event?
Girls on the Run meets every fall and spring. At the end of each season we hold a 5K event where our girls and their Sole Mates (running buddies) come together with all of the other schools and run 3.1 miles together for the first time. The public is welcome to join in our Fun Runs. We have our Halloween Fun Run scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 25 at Truckee River View Sports Park. The entire family is welcome to come and walk/run/jog with us or just cheer on the girls. Last spring we had 300 participants and we are expecting even more next week. Burger Me will be making lunch for all race participants after the run is over. You can register on our website at http://www.girlsontherunsierras.org.
May anyone volunteer for “Girls on the Run?”
Almost anyone can volunteer for Girls on the Run – Sierras from high-school age group and older. We are always looking for head coaches, assistant coaches, sole mate (running buddy) and board members. Girls on the Run – Sierras is forming a board and looking for interested parties with board experience.
In what other ways may people can help the organization?
We are always looking for ways to scholarship our girls. It costs $150 to attend the program and we proudly scholarship over 20 percent of our girls each season with the generous support of our community. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to make a donation.
” This week’s interview was done by the Sierra Sun’s Liz Motta. For future suggestions, please email email@example.com, using Volunteer as the subject.
As much as this is an organization for girls, it is equally a program for women of all ages. Come visit us after school at one of our practices (Monday and Wednesday 3:15 to 4:45 p.m.) to see first hand. Don’t miss the Halloween Fun Run Saturday, Oct. 25. The event starts at 9 a.m. and the race start-time is 10 a.m. Register at http://www.girlsontherunsierras.org.