More than Running: Meet Khadija (Part 4 of 5)

“If every girl did Girls on the Run, girls would know that they can be kind and strong.”

Meet Khadija! Khadija is 11 years old and has been a part of Girls on the Run for two seasons. Strong might be an understatement when it comes to this 11 year old. Khadija is the middle child of eight and she moved to the United States from Somalia just a few years ago. This past year, Khadija lost her older brother to gun violence but Girls on the Run has been a place where she can take her mind off of that sadness. “I like Girls on the Run a lot because I can show who I really am.” 

Khadija shows who she really is when she lights up about her family’s new cat Laylo or when she can complete laps with her friends. When asked how she thought the world would be different if every girl did Girls on the Run, she told us that “girls would know that they could be strong and kind. They would know that they wouldn’t just have to be one thing and it was ok to have comfortable and uncomfortable emotions because we all do.” 

Girls on the Run is a place where girls can be uniquely themselves – they discover what being themselves means and why it is important to stay true to who they are. Khadija’s favorite part of practice is setting a lap goal for herself because she can complete that goal with friends cheering her on along the way and she knows that if she can complete her goals in practice, she can do the same at home and at school – singing and dancing along the way.

Girls on the Run is so much more than running. Girls, like Khadija, learn that they do not need to be afraid to show who they really are and that they will be accepted. You can help Colorado girls know that they can be strong and kind by making a donation today.