Girls on the Run Awarded Inaugural Glenstone Square Big Idea Program Grant

Girls on the Run has been selected as the nonprofit agency to receive the inaugural Glenstone Square Big Idea Program grant. The grant includes $4,000 and a one-year lease of office space in the Glenstone Square shopping center to help further the group’s charitable mission.

Girls on the Run will receive the use of a 1,000-square-foot office unit in the Glenstone Square Office Complex, on South Glenstone Avenue just north of Sunshine Street in Springfield, including utilities and some furniture. The one-year grant period begins July 1, 2013.

The grant is valued at $20,000 ($16,000 in in-kind donations of office, utilities and furniture) plus a $4,000 unrestricted grant for operations or innovations associated with the project.

“I was so excited about the office space that I literally started jumping up and down when I heard the news! We desperately needed a place to utilize volunteers and grow Girls on the Run in Springfield. The central location is ideal,” said Trish Hopkins, Council Director for Girls on the Run of Southwest Missouri.

Girls on the Run seeks to inspire young girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using an experience-based curriculum, which creatively integrates running and seeks to address issues such as childhood obesity, body image and bullying, among others. It currently serves 1,459 girls at 15 Greene County schools, six of them in low-income neighborhoods. Girls on the Run plans to use the space to serve as a headquarters for their programming, which will soon expand into Christian County, and the cash grant to help fund activities at area schools, which include after-school lessons, running games and exercise, and an end-of-semester five-kilometer run.

“Glenstone Square is pleased to support our nonprofit community with this new program. We were most impressed by the Girls on the Run program, and we strongly support their mission,” said Jana Funk, whose family owns Glenstone Square and established this program to help local nonprofits further their missions for a year without the stress of finding office space and paying rent.

Contact Bridget Dierks, Director of Nonprofit Services, at (417) 864-6199 with questions about the program. Another round of applications will be accepted next spring for agencies interested in the 2014-15 grant period.