This summer, the Kokomo, Indiana campus of Ross Medical Education Center started working with The Gilead House on their 8th annual 5K called Steps to Recovery. The 5K will help fund their newly renovated facility to offer safe and sober living conditions for up to 20 women. The staff, faculty, and students helped by creating flyers for them and then hosting the 5K’s water stop. “We all feel like we had a special hand in helping because we saw what it takes to put on such an event as well as be a part of helping others,” said Shannon Spencer, Kokomo’s Campus Director. “We had numerous staff, faculty, and student participate.”
The Gilead House specializes in drug and alcohol addiction recovery and provides resources to those reentering society from jail or prison. They offer free, personalized outreach programs and services for broken, forgotten and hopeless men, women, and their children. Educational and training programs are provided that equip people with the tools they need to succeed at home, work, and in their local communities. They are also a trusted voice in the judicial system on behalf of individuals and families, advocating for their right to a rehabilitative experience.
This cause hit home for some of those in the Kokomo Ross community. “I have seen the results of addiction in my own family and I am happy to give back!” Angela Gano, a student in the Medical Assistant program explained, “it brings a smile to your face when you see others that struggled and get you a chance to help them.” Angela’s classmate, Erica, shared her own perspective saying, “seeing people walking for a cause sheds light to others so they know there is a problem out there, and it needs to be addressed. It was fun to be out there with classmates, instructors, and the staff.”
The walk was during Sheena’s first module with Ross, but that didn’t stop her from getting involved! Sheena shared, “it was great to get out early in the morning and help other people. I have never passed out water to others while they ran, and it made me feel good helping them, even if it was just handing them a cup of water.” Ashley Padfield is an Admissions Representative and one of Ross in Kokomo’s newest employees. She was excited to volunteer for the water stop at the 5K, saying, “it was wonderful volunteering for such a great cause! I loved seeing people push themselves and come together with friends and family!”
Cory Ward, Career Services Student Support Representative also was glad to be a part of the day. “Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart,” he said, quoting Elizabeth Andrew. “I enjoyed being on the giving side of a 5K instead of one of the runners taking the water from the volunteers. It was nice to see how much all the runners appreciated us being there and cheering them on.” Shannon Spencer, Campus Director, was just as thrilled as her staff and students to be out there supporting a great cause! “As the Campus Director at Kokomo Ross Medical, it was great to see our team come together and continue Ross’s values and integrity outside of school doors and bring it to the community. I’m very proud of our team and look forward to doing more work in the community!”