The Charles River Center, a social services and advocacy group for children and adults with developmental disabilities and autism, is organizing its first annual road race to benefit and support the 500-plus families they serve in the Metro West region.
This 5K road race, a USA Track and Field-certified course, will be held on Sunday, Nov. 6 at 11:00 a.m.
Robin Fabiano, co-chairman of the event, said that everyone is welcome to participate—whether they be runners, walkers, families or people with strollers or dogs. Food, festivities and facility tours will be available after the race.
“Our goal is to raise 1000 participants, which I think is a lofty goal,” she said.
The Charles River Center, founded in 1956, offers employment services, therapeutic and day services and residential support. It is affiliated with 17 residential group homes serving about 15 communities in the Metro West area. The center is also active in legislation reform and provides resources and respite for families.
“We can serve people with very complex needs,” Fabiano said.
Board chairman Bill Kelly, whose son has benefitted from the center’s services, said the organization “has been terrific.”
“It’s an inclusive organization and we do rely on the support of our members and communities,” he said. “We’re trying to make this into a fun and inclusive event for everybody.”
Fabiano said later in an e-mail that “We are not trying to cure something or to raise research dollars in search of a cure. Our mission is much more basic and in many cases more urgent; it is to provide children, teens and adults with disabilities a life marked by dignity, care and respect.”
Those interested in participating, as well as those who want to volunteer at the event, can sign up at charlesrivercenterroadrace.com.
**Update: Number pick-up and early registration is available on Saturday, Nov. 5 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Charles River Center. Day-of-race registration will be held on Sunday, Nov. 6 from 9:00-10:30 a.m. (race starts at 11:00 a.m.). Dick and Rick Hoyt will be participating and signing copies of the book "Devoted: The Story of a Father's Love For His Son."