BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Following a fantastic turnout last year, the annual “Stand Among Friends” walk/run event is set for Sunday at 7:30a on the FAU Campus.
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Stand Among Friends (SAF), a Boca Raton-based charitable 501©3 nonprofit organization, will host the third annual “emb(race)®” at FAU’s Boca Raton campus. The walk/run event celebrates abilities, not disabilities, and will take place on Sunday, February 24 at 7:30 a.m.
“The entire FAU community embraces this event, and we are thrilled to host it for the third year in a row,” said FAU President Mary Jane Saunders. “We are inspired by the enthusiasm and support the community has shown for this important cause. I invite all of the FAU community to come out and experience the true meaning of celebrating different abilities.”
The event will feature a 5K, 10K and one-mile family walk and is open to people of all ages and abilities. Whether participants run, walk, stroll, roll, use a wheelchair or hand cycle, everyone is welcome to enter. There will be games for children, music, food, prizes, awards and many other fun activities. More than $135,000 was raised during the 2012 festivities in which 1,500 people attended. FAU benefactor Christine E. Lynn will serve as this year’s honorary chair.
“I’m so excited for our third annual emb(race) and for the more than 2,000 participants anticipated to join us this time,” said Shawn Friedkin, founder and president of SAF. “I want to especially thank Christine Lynn, our honorary chairperson and FAU President MJ Saunders, for their commitment and support of this all inclusive event.”
SAF was founded in 1997 to enhance the lives of people with disabilities by promoting opportunities for them to live without limits and experience the highest degree of independence and success in their communities. SAF helps people realize and achieve their career aspirations and widen their social opportunities so they may experience a meaningful life, both personally and professionally. In 2006, SAF opened The Disability Center, a designated Center of Excellence within the State of Florida university system, on FAU’s Boca Raton campus in the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing building.
Current SAF programs include Employment for People with Disabilities, Disability Sensitivity, Assistive Technology Center & Off-site Demonstrations, Vocational Evaluation and Social Security Benefits Planning Services. These programs help individuals transition to greater independence by teaching work, technology and social skills while emphasizing each person’s talents, interests and education.
Under a grant from the Able Trust, SAF works with FAU’s Office for Students with Disabilities to provide job placement services for graduating seniors who have disabilities by helping them prepare for, find and maintain employment. Through the CareerAbility program, SAF provides a full complement of employment and career services for students and adults with disabilities. The organization delivers direct services to more than 600 people annually, and in recent years has placed more than 700 people into productive employment commensurate with their education and experience.
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