FLINT — One of mid-Michigan’s most celebrated charity races will be going virtual this month to support children who have been victims of abuse and neglect.
The 13th Annual Flint Superhero Run, which benefits the Voices for Children Advocacy Center in Flint, will be held in a virtual race format from Sept. 7 to 27. Unlike a face-to-face event, participants can choose between a flexible 5K or 1K race option and select the location and time to complete the race within the 20-day time frame.
Traditionally, the Flint Superhero Run is held in downtown Flint each April and attended by over a thousand runners and walkers dressed in superhero costumes. But with COVID-19 restrictions in place, organizers decided that a virtual race would be a safer option for the community.
“We will definitely miss the families and kids who come out every year to the physical race,” said Claudnyse Holloman, executive director of the Voices for Children Advocacy Center. “But with this virtual format, people can finish the race any way they want to. They can do the race all at once, split miles up on different days or even run through their neighborhood with their kids.”
Participants young and old alike are encouraged to dress as their favorite superheroes and share photos and videos of their virtual race experiences by tagging @Voicesforcac on Facebook or using #SuperHeroFlint2020 on Instagram.
As with the traditional race, all proceeds for the virtual Superhero 5K and 1K Fun Runs will go directly to help child survivors of human trafficking, abuse and neglect.
Since the COVID-19 shutdown in the spring, Voices for Children has seen an increase in self-reported child abuse cases, with many children calling in to say that their home lives have not been safe for them. Holloman said that now—more than ever—the center needs the community’s support to keep children protected from physical, sexual and mental abuse.
“The race reminds kids that they are the superheroes, and that the adults are the community heroes that support our little heroes,” she said. “Every dollar that’s raised provides hope, help and healing for kids, so that they can get the justice they deserve.”
Registration for the Flint Superhero Fun Run is open until Sept. 18. The cost to enter is $30 for the 5K Run & Walk and $25 for the 1K Fun Run.
Runners and walkers will receive a participation medal and a race number and bib upon registering. Packets can be picked up starting today at 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Complete Runner, 915 S. Dort Hwy. in Flint.
More info on the Flint Superhero Run is available at www.voicesforcac.org/events/flint-superhero-run/.