Great Support for 2018 Nun Run

By Isabella Futchi
Guest Blogger

Over 300 people of all ages participated in the Ursuline Sisters HIV/AIDS Ministry’s 4th annual Nun Run Oct.6 at the Ursuline Center in Canfield.

The fundraiser includes a children’s run, 1-mile walk and 5K run and benefits the ministry’s children’s program.

Casa Madre offers tutoring, crisis intervention, child advocacy and recreational activities for children infected or affected by HIV/AIDS in preschool through 12th grade.
“The proceeds directly help the kids that I work with,” says Linda Titus, director. “I love what I do here.”

The event also includes display tables featuring the many ministries connected to the Ursuline Sisters. The Nun Run raises awareness about these programs. Dan Wakefield, ministry director, states, “The Nun Run showcases the good works that the Ursuline Sisters of Youngstown do.”

Supporters Eileen and Ray Novotny have been involved with the HIV/AIDS ministry many years.

“I have a heart for the children, so that’s what pulled me in,” says Eileen Novotny. For the second year in a row, she received an award for the most sponsorship money raised.

Ray Novotny worked a booth during the festivities. “We’ve never run into a group of people who do so much with so little, and that’s the Ursulines,” he observes.

Dan Morelli, first-year Nun Run volunteer and community health worker with the ministry, believes the event greatly impacts the community and “shows that Youngstown comes together.”

The ministry is marking 25 years of service. According to its mission statement, “The Ursuline Sisters HIV/AIDS Ministry, inspired by faith, empowers and affirms adults and children touched by HIV/AIDS, in collaboration with community resources.”

“Events like this allow us to come together and be reminded of that mission and vision,” posits Brigid Kennedy, president of Ursuline Ministries.

The HIV/AIDS ministry serves Mahoning Valley residents who are HIV-positive with a monthly support group, a pantry for food, household and personal items, child and family services, a pediatric and adult HIV clinic, housing services, and free HIV testing.