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Good Shepherd director thanks Hancock for Trike-A-Thon success

July 10, 2013|By DON AINES | dona@herald-mail.com
  • January Souders, director of the Good Shepherd Preschool.
Submitted photo

HANCOCK, Md. — For a dozen years, preschoolers in Hancock have been pedaling tricycles to raise money to help children facing life-threatening illnesses.

The total raised from 12 Trike-A-Thons for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital surpassed $30,000 when the event was held on May 8, said January Souders, director of the Good Shepherd Preschool.

Souders — who has worked at Good Shepherd since 2000 and has been its director since 2005 — is going to Memphis, Tenn., this week for St. Jude’s Volunteer Appreciation Day.

She has also been asked to speak at a coordinator workshop titled “Moments of Truth,” in which she will share with others how Good Shepherd has grown its event, increasing business and community support, parental involvement and backing from town residents.

Souders said she would talk about “how we are able to continuously give in a small community — despite the recession.”

When she became director of the preschool, Souders said she and teacher Kathy McCarty wanted to make the Trike-A-Thon bigger, moving the event to Widmeyer Park, with four riding areas, a play center, gift bags and medals for the kids, and snacks and lunch served.

The boy and girl who raise the most money also receive bicycles, Souders said.

She credited the business community for much of the event’s success.

“They give us everything for the day from the bakery cookies that we serve ... drinks, the bicycles and monetary donations for both the prizes and St. Jude,” Souders said in a recent e-mail.

The event also benefits the children at Good Shepherd, Souders said.

“It teaches life lessons of empathy for those kids” receiving treatment at St. Jude’s, she said.

About 40 children ages 2 to 5 took part in this year’s Trike-A-Thon, along with many parent and community volunteers, raising $2,706, Souders said. That raised the total since 2002 to $31,804.24, she said.

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