The 3rd annual HEELS UP 5K race & walk is scheduled for Saturday, September 11, 2021. Proceeds from this hybrid event will benefit a comprehensive renovation project to improve the common space in Unit 4 – the neurobehavioral unit – at The Homestead at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hospital.
The in-person race will commence at 9:00 a.m. from the starting point at the Medical Arts Building, which is located on the Hospital campus at 418 North Main Street. ‘Virtual’ participants are invited to complete the event between September 4-18. As the race date will mark the 20th Anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, there will be special activities to honor First Responders and those who lost their lives on that day.
The Homestead is a 150 bed skilled nursing facility that provides short-term rehabilitation services, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, as well as traditional and specialty long term care services including a secure cognitively impaired unit.
Last year’s race, held virtually due to the pandemic, was a huge success with more than $9,000 raised from generous area businesses and donors for activities and exercise programs for residents at The Homestead. These funds went a long way to help the talented and dedicated staff use their amazing creativity to keep the residents active and upbeat, and reduce their feelings of isolation, anxiety and uncertainty, brought on by the COVID-19 safety protocols.
The pandemic illustrated how important the simple comforts of home are in providing a sense of safety warmth and security to the vulnerable population at The Homestead. Now, more than ever, residents at long-term care facilities like the Homestead need a comfortable, inviting, and safe living space they can call home; helping to maintain their dignity and allowing their loved ones who cannot be with them to breathe a bit easier.
The course will include gentle hills and lots of fun, and runners and walkers of all abilities are welcome. Sponsorships are available and offer a great opportunity to support The Homestead and to engage employees in corporate health and wellness. Other ways to get involved include sponsoring a company team in the race or volunteering to provide a water station on race day.