#WhyCFK, CFK Events

Why I Run: Natalie Auerbach’s Marathon Story

I began running in my teens. I ran because it got me out of the house where emotions often ran high, it gave me time to be by myself, and it was a time to release whatever teenage anguish I was harboring. For these reasons, I ran for hours at a time. And running became a part of me and my identity. When I got injured training for the marathon 12 years ago, I knew in my mind that one day I would train for and complete a marathon. But, after two children and a car accident – I had considered that dream dead. Until a friend asked me (she claims I asked her, but I wouldn’t have had the courage) to run the marathon with her to support Change for Kids. And because CFK is so near and dear to my heart, I said yes.

Almost five months ago, I started out by running a mile. One mile. I swore as I ran that mile. Not in the good way – swearing that I would run daily or better myself in some way. In the bad way, the way that includes words with four letters that I don’t like to say around my children.

So, if I started out swearing, why did I keep going? The reason was twofold. The first is that I believe so completely in the mission of Change for Kids. I have spent the past six months in the office working to raise funds to supply our partner schools with the critical resources they need to get their students ready for success in middle school and beyond. I believe so completely that I decided to not just talk my mouth off, but to also put my physical and emotional willpower on the line for Change for Kids.

The second reason is one that many of us have experienced. Nothing motivates more than fear. Fear can be crippling, and in so many instances it is so hard to overcome. For me, in terms of training for and running a marathon, fighting fear is liberating. It is an obstacle to overcome. And for me, it is empowering to overcome an obstacle to meet a goal. But the true motivation comes from knowing that our students have many obstacles to overcome, and their odds of overcoming these obstacles can only be strengthened by a solid education. And that’s where I can help. I can help raise funds to help CFK provide even more resources to our students and our schools. As I’m running, when the miles start to add up and the legs start to get tired, I will focus on the ultimate goal, the reason I am running, and the goal will energize me to the end. NatalieHeadshot.jpg

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Why Am I running the NYC marathon for CFK – Yago Cuesta

Yago Cuesta

 

Running makes me a happier, better person. It gives me joy, focus, purpose, and a profound feeling of fulfillment.

Running the NYC Marathon as a fundraiser for Change for Kids gives me all of that and much more — the opportunity to give back to people by doing one of the things I like the most.

Change for Kids invests in elementary schools in NYC to help under-privileged children to succeed in middle school and beyond. In other words, it empowers them to learn; it encourages them to bring their skills up to their full potential and to push limits aside. This sounds very familiar to a runner.

Like running, learning is an endless adventure, where every single step forward counts and is worth celebrating. Everyone is invited and no one excluded. For no person is so gifted that she does not need to learn more, nor so hopeless that she cannot learn something new. And we should be equally amazed by both accomplishments, as we should by every single step that we take on the way.

There is no more powerful leverage for long-lasting change than education. Like a marathon, it’s a long-distance race that can lead you very far away. And Change for Kids makes both possible.

Let’s then keep running to learn more; let’s keep learning as we run.

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CFK Volunteers make a difference every day

Thanks to our 1,400+ volunteers who delivered over 4,500 volunteer hours last year, Change for Kids made a positive impact on thousands of NYC public elementary school children in underserved neighborhoods. See how volunteers from VSA Partners recently transformed P.S. 329.

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There are so many ways to get involved with Change for Kids. Here are upcoming ways that you can get involved!

School & Career Days Volunteer at a CFK School event in May and inspire our students to dream big about their futures.

Golf for Kids Join us on June 26th at the historic Saint Andrew’s course in Hastings-on-Hudson to benefit our 12 partner schools.

TCS NYC Marathon Every mile you run for Change for Kids will help bring programs and resources to over 4,700 CFK public elementary students.

#WhyCFK, CFK Sponsors

Andy’s #WhyCFK Story

Change for Kids is recruiting for our 2018 TCS New York City Marathon Team, and we want youMeet Andy Hoffman, a 2017 CFK Marathon Runner.  We asked Andy about his marathon experience and why he ran for Change for Kids.

Andy Hoffman

Why did you choose to run for Change for Kids?
I was introduced to Team CFK through my company, The Carlyle Group, who is a partner of Change for Kids.  I wanted to run the NYC Marathon for a charity that I really believed in, and for me, nothing is more important than access to a strong educational system beginning at a very young age.  The work that Change for Kids is doing at the elementary school level is setting the stage for children to succeed as they move up through middle school, high school, and beyond.

What was it like running the largest marathon in the world?
I’ve run a handful of other marathons before, but this was my first NYC experience, and I can honestly say it’s just totally different.  The entire day is really a unique and amazing experience.  In addition to the excitement, it’s also a very satisfying and proud feeling to complete the race.  And doing it while helping kids made it even more satisfying.

Any advice for this year’s runners?
If you’re training for a marathon, set a training plan that works for your lifestyle.  Create a schedule that you’re going to be able to stick to, and that you can consistently balance with other personal and work commitments in your life.  You want to go into a marathon prepared, so you need to get the miles in.  But you also want the process to be fun, not a burden.  So balancing all of that is key.

Learn more about running the 2018 TCS NYC Marathon on November 4th here.

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Why Reading Matters By The End Of Third Grade

Reading proficiency by the end of third grade is a critical marker in a child’s educational development. Until third grade, children learn to read, but after third grade they read to learn. Children who enter fourth grade without reading proficiency are more likely to dropout of high school, reducing their earnings potential and chances for success.* This risk is greatest for students in low-income communities where schools often cannot provide the resources needed to prepare their students for success.

75% of children who struggle with reading in the 3rd grade will never catch up to their peers unless they get the help they need in elementary school.

That’s why CFK aims to make an impact in reading proficiency early in a child’s educational career. Change for Kids provides programs, tutoring and other resources to aid in building competent readers.

Through our programs Guest Reader and Reading Buddies, children have the opportunity to hear a story from our volunteers and corporate partners. These activities are special, engage students in literacy, and often leave the children asking when they will see their guest reader again!

 

*Annie E Casey Foundation

#WhyCFK, CFK Partner Schools

New Year, New School: CFK Expands to Staten Island!

You heard right!

CFK is breaking new ground in 2018 by officially serving all five boroughs! We’re thrilled to welcome P.S. 21 in Staten Island to our network. In a borough where there’s a lack of nonprofit offerings and only 51% of third graders are proficient in reading, CFK has a tremendous opportunity to make an impact. Principal Anthony Cosentino is joining forces with CFK to enhance P.S. 21’s STEM offerings and community engagement. CFK believes every elementary school student–no matter their zip code–deserves a quality education that will prepare them for success in middle school and beyond.

 

CFK Sponsors

CFK Supporters Come Together Citywide to Make Holidays Bright for Students

A whoopie cushion, light saber and pogo stick were just some of the items students at our partner schools had at the top of their wishlists this year.

While the holidays are a time to celebrate, they can also be an extra stressor for families across NYC. Every holiday season, Change for Kids hosts collection drives for our partner schools to ensure students have an extra reason to smile at the end of December.

Thanks to generous individuals and corporate partners, 2702 toys and winter essentials were delivered to students in December. Santa and his elves even made an appearance to deliver gifts, while other corporate partners personally handed the gifts to individual students.

Many thanks to the following supporters for making the holiday season so special for our students!

  • Apex Systems
  • Apollo Global Management
  • Blackstone
  • Davis & Gilbert
  • First Republic National Bank
  • Helm US
  • Jessica Scott + friends
  • Labaton Sucharow
  • Moda Operandi
  • Q5 Partners
  • Salesforce
  • Slack
  • Union Square Ventures
  • Yale Club