ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — ‘Girls on the Run’ is preparing to host hundreds of participants for its biannual 5K run coming up this weekend. The nonprofit organization’s mission is to inspire girls to be healthy, joyful, and confident.

Girls on the Run (GOTR) coach Carla Brugnoni explained that while the program is designed around running, it’s more than just that.

“We do incorporate fun ways to use running in all of our lessons, but it’s also about teaching girls specific skills and strategies that they can use to help them in their everyday lives. So whether it’s how to manage your emotions, or how to resolve conflict, how to help others how to make intentional decisions, and it’s all things that they can take back with them and use with their family or with their friends at school,” Brugnoni said.

Brugnoni added that being a coach is one of the most rewarding experiences of her life.

“Just being able to contribute to these young girls having the tools that they need to navigate through such a challenging time in their life, you know, the tween or preteen era, there’s so much that goes on. And it’s really, really important and so valuable, I think, to give these girls the tools to get through that,” Brugnoni said.

The celebratory 5K marks the culmination of the hard work teams put in during their 10-week season. This is GOTR’s largest fall 5K season with 25 teams across 4 counties participating.

Jane Escudero has been participating in GOTR for the past couple of years and says she cannot wait for the upcoming 5K.

“It’s really fun and very tiring. But mostly fun! So I’m really excited because you have a ton of people cheering you on,” Escudero said.

The 5K is taking place on Sunday, December 4 at Monroe Community College’s Brighton Campus starting at 10 a.m. On site will also be face painting tables and other stations for the runners to decorate themselves before the run. There will also be a DJ and food trucks for everyone to enjoy.

To learn more about GOTR or to get involved, just click here.