Meet new people, raise awareness, have fun, say team members
Camille Jensen

Rosemary Schwarz has just one piece of advice for anyone thinking about or participating in the year’s Sun Run: wear sensible shoes.

The posAbilities North Shore Options senior support worker has participated in the 10-kilometre run for three years and says this is key to ensuring comfort during the race.

That aside, bands playing live music while people crowd the streets to cheer you on create an atmosphere of encouragement and community. It’s also why Rosemary would like to see fellow staff and people who access services from posAbilities partake in this year’s race.

“There’s something for everybody,” says Rosemary, who adds there are two- and five-kilometre options, and the race is wheelchair accessible.

“The whole city is a community in that event. You meet a lot of people, people stop and talk to you and run with you and ask you who you are and what you do, what you’re all about.

“It’s an opportunity for everyone to get out and just have fun together.”

This is the first year posAbilities has participated in the race as a corporate team. The event is part of its employee wellness program that aims to promote health and well-being through workshops, supports and extracurricular activities.

Wellness committee member Sarina Ram says nine people are already registered for the Sun Run with registration open until the end of February. PosAbilities needs 10 people to make a corporate team but Sarina adds “the more the better.”

“The goal is to get everybody to come out or as many people that can make it,” she says.

Louise Blackwell, a posAbilities host family services team leader, is part of the team and says she’s looking forward to the event, which also generates greater awareness about posAbilities.

“I’ve never done it and I’ve always wanted to,” says Louise. “I think doing it as a team is a really neat idea. It also gets our name out there and what we do and why we are doing this.”

The event is also a great opportunity to bring along family, adds Simone Brandl, a self advocate adviser for the Safe Committee and posAbilities line worker, who’s participated in the Sun Run on and off for 10 years.

Simone will be running with her three children and looking to keep up with her energetic 11-year-old son.

“I think that’s the most fun, he runs ahead of me and I have to keep up with him,” she says with a laugh.

“Everybody can do it, all skill levels, if you can’t run it you can walk it, just bring some water and you’re all good.”

The Vancouver Sun Run takes place Sunday April 17 at 9:30 a.m. The race is Canada’s largest — with 51,000 Sun runners participating last year — and the second largest timed 10 km in the world.

In its 27th year, the Sun Run’s primary mandate is to promote health, fitness and community spirit and to support amateur athletics. While the Sun Run is not designated as a charity event, more than $1.74 million in proceeds from the event has been donated to important causes since 1985.

To learn more about this year’s run, click here.

Anyone interested to join the posAbilities Sun Run team can contact Sarina Ram at by Feb. 28.

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