TROY – This year, the annual FirstHealth Montgomery Foundation Spring Event will turn its spotlight onto a new family-focused program in Montgomery County called MARCHES. The fundraising event is an evening of entertainment slated for Friday, April 27, at STARworks, 100 Russell Dr., in Star.
The evening features dinner by Elliott’s on Linden, a farm-to-table restaurant from Pinehurst, an open bar, plus silent and live auctions. Dress is casual cocktail attire. Tickets are $75 per person. Proceeds from the event will fund components of the new but already popular MARCHES health and wellness program. The program began earlier this year, but several families have already embraced it.
“In the first six weeks of MARCHES meetings, nearly 40 children and family members gathered twice a week at the Biscoe Community Center,” says Roxanne Elliott, FirstHealth Community Health Services. “To have so many people try it out and then return week after week is exciting. The program continues to grow.”
The MARCHES program, short for “Montgomery Active Recreation through Community-Healthcare Engagement,” is a pilot program designed to help youth in rural areas. It uses a family – and community – oriented approach to wellness by helping children and their families develop a healthier lifestyle. Meetings include exercise and fun activities, tips on healthy eating and general health education. Children who are eligible have a body mass index (a measurement based on height and weight) in the 85th percentile or higher.
“The activities and programming are based on a model developed at Duke Children’s Hospital,” says Elliott. “That model helped thousands of children and their families in Durham. We’re excited to be able bring it to the Montgomery County community, and to have the Foundation’s Spring Event support it.”
Funds from this year’s event will build a walking trail on the campus of the Biscoe Community Center, the home of MARCHES; purchase program supplies to assist with operational needs; and provide participation incentives such as gas cards for transportation to the program activities and groceries to take home for cooking demonstrations.
For more information about the Spring Event on April 27, visit www.firsthealth.org/springevent, or call (910) 571-5024 to purchase tickets. To learn more about MARCHES, visit www.firsthealth.org/MARCHES.