Indiana Donor Network hosted its final 5K of the year this month, ending our most successful 5K season to date. The result: Events in three Indiana cities, approximately 1,100 participants and $70,000 raised for donation education and donor families.
The Indiana Donor Network 5Ks are run/walks and 1-mile family fun routes meant to celebrate the gift of life, honor organ, tissue and eye donors, and spread awareness about the importance of donation.
An expanded lineup is partly the reason for this year’s 5K success. Indiana Donor Network has hosted 5Ks in the Fort Wayne and the greater Indianapolis areas for years but we added Evansville as a new addition in 2016.
“Our volunteers in the southern part of the state had requested more events in that area,” said Lauren Welch, the special events and sponsorships coordinator at Indiana Donor Network who oversees event planning. “We’ve found that Evansville is a close-knit community and the people there easily get behind our cause.”
Other event changes helped to boost 5K attendance this year. New registration software made it easier for participants to recruit team members and to share their stories. Food trucks, balloon artists, DJs, mascot visits and more were also added to the events to infuse a more family-friendly, festival-like atmosphere.
So, what’s in store for 2017? Since Indiana Donor Network serves the entire state, Welch hints that the 5K lineup may expand to yet another new city. She also says donation and transplantation stories will be shared in even more engaging ways.
“You have donor families and friends who are there at the 5Ks to honor their loved ones and then you have the transplant recipients who are there to say thank you and to give back,” Welch said. “The stories behind why they’re participating serve as a connect to purpose for many of us at Indiana Donor Network.”
To see photos and timing results from this year’s 5Ks or to show your support with a donation to the Indiana Donor Network Foundation, click here. Stay tuned for more details on the 2017 Indiana Donor Network 5Ks!
- Blog Spotlight: An Advocate Family
- Meet our 2016 Donate Life Rose Parade Float honorees