By Abigail Chadwick, Assistant News editor (Courtesy photo/Libby Unruh)
OBU’s Enactus has organized the Spero Sprint, a fundraiser for refugees in Oklahoma City.
The Spero Sprint will be Saturday morning, April 21 at the Wheeler District in Oklahoma City.
The event is part of a joint fundraiser between OBU’s Enactus and the Spero Project, a nonprofit based in Oklahoma City.
The fundraiser is to help the Spero Project raise funds and awareness for the refugees in Oklahoma City.
“We chose a 5K because it serves two purposes: to raise funds and awareness for the OKC refugee community,” Enactus president and junior finance major, Libby Unruh said. “The race proceeds will expand Spero’s outreach by allowing them to provide additional quality care to the refugee community.”
According to the event website, https://okbuenac-tus.wixsite.com/sperosprint, registration for the fun run is $25 online and $30 in-person on the day of the race. Registration for the 5K is $35 online and $40 in-person on the day of the race.
The one-mile fun run will start at 8:30 a.m. and the 5K will start at 9 a.m.
Beyond the run, the event will also have other attractions.
“Our family-friendly event will include food, music, and Ferris wheel rides,” Unruh said.
Enactus and the Spero Project have been working together since last fall. The Spero Sprint is only one of the projects the two groups have worked on together.
“Enactus first got involved with the Spero Project last semester,” Enactus vice-president and junior marketing major, Isabella Scarinzi said.
“In the Fall we taught citizenships as well as financial classes for the refugees. Three of them were able to pass their citizenship test.”
The Spero Sprint was planned and organized by Enactus. This was done to help meet the Spero Project’s goals in expanding their services to the refugee community in Oklahoma City.
“They have had a longtime dream to expand their services to provide better quality care for the refugees, but they did not have a business plan or a source of funding for this project,” Unruh said. “OBU Enactus seeks to partner alongside ministries to expand their outreach by finding sustainable solutions, so we came up with a business plan for the project and found the solution to host an annual 5K as an awareness event and steady source of income for the project.”
Enactus chose to make the fundraiser a race with the intention of establishing it as a yearly event to raise funds and awareness.
“We chose a race because our hope is that it will be an annual event,” Scarinzi said. “It is also an awareness event, so we wanted people to be able to have fun and cultivate wellness as they support their fellow new neighbors.”
Enactus has worked with restaurants in Shawnee to help raise the funds for setting up the fundraiser. These restaurants agreed to give Enactus a portion of their profits from a specific day.
“We have held a couple restaurant fundraiser nights in order to promote our event and allow local restaurants to sponsor the event,” Unruh said.
“Generous restaurants such as Freddy’s and Schlotzsky’s have allowed us to hold fundraiser nights where they give us a percentage of profits to go to-wards paying the race expenses.”
Enactus has been working with the Spero Project since the fall and they plan to continue working with them in the future.
“Our relationship just began this past year, so we still have a lot of work to do,” Unruh said. “We plan to continue assisting them with this project and hope that there will be more opportunities to expand their ministry in the future.”
Enactus was in charge of the Spero Sprint this year, but in future years the Spero Project may be the primary organizers. Enactus’s president said they hope to train the Spero Project so this will be possible.
“We completely started from scratch in planning this event, so we have done a lot of learning along the way,” Unruh said. “Enactus has pretty much been completely in charge of the event, but our hope is to train Spero after this year, so they will be able to host this event on their own for years to come.”