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Colors for a cause at 'Runnin' for the House Color Run'

Thomas Jefferson Middle School hosted its annual "Runnin' for the House Color Run" fundraiser and broke a school record, with $7,000 collected to benefit the Ronald McDonald House in Bakersfield.

Students were sprayed with colorful powders at the event while running around the track field. There were awards for those students that completed the most laps. There were also awards for the top fundraisers.

Crews Brendt is a 7th grade physical education and leadership teacher who has led the color run for the last eight years.

"What I enjoy most about this event is watching the kids have fun. I thank all the kids and the town for the money they raised for a worthy cause."

"Events like this are special because it gives them a chance to help those less fortunate."

Others also praised the students that participated.

"I think it's amazing that these students take into consideration volunteering their time outside of school to raise money for those families in need," history teacher Elsa Gutierrez said.

TJ Principal Patrick Acosta said, "I am proud of the students being able to raise $7,000. It is a testament to their commitment to supporting the RMH. It shows their leadership."

"I'm giving credit to the staff, especially Mr. Crews, for keeping the students motivated and informed of the important work the RMH does."

Social worker Mrs. Mancia said, "It is a great opportunity for the students to have a healthy school climate where they can interact with one another and the school staff while contributing to the community."

The over 450 students that participated learned the act of kindness.

"It is teaching students to give of themselves to a cause that is not for them and to sacrifice a little of what they have for all of the kids and families going through some difficult times and have to use the RMH," Brendt said.

Scarlett Sabin is the RMH of Bakersfield director.

"The RMH is a home away from home for families while their child is hospitalized at one of the area hospitals. Our mission is to provide comfort, care and support to families during their child's medical crisis."

She said 100% of the funds raised through the local efforts of all Wasco middle schools participating in the annual color runs stay in Kern County for operational expenses.

She also expressed that it creates awareness among the students who are the community's future leaders.

"They learn at a young age the importance of community service. The students give from their hearts, which means so much to the families we help."

This year once again, the run was in memory of a long-time RMH champion, Danny Rueda.

His wife Petra said, "My husband started this because he wanted to give back to the community's kids and parents in need. He believed in helping others."

She said, "It's awesome that they remember him for this. It's emotional. I love it because I know how much this charity meant to him."

"I am grateful that the Wasco Union Elementary School District has kept this event going and also for the students and staff for their hard work and dedication."

 

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