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TRAILBLAZING: Girls on the Run Serving Greater Kansas City

Rebecca Sommers founded Girls on the Run Serving Greater Kansas City in 2007. Running is a key component, but it’s far from the only one. The organization’s programs, tailored for students in the third to the eighth grades, are designed to strengthen girls’ social, emotional, physical, and behavioral skills. Participants learn life skills, such as managing emotions, resolving conflict, helping others, and making intentional decisions. “We need to invest in our young girls when they are bombarded with external challenges,” Gina Lichte, Girls on the Run, said, adding, “At Girls on the Run, our volunteer mentors are helping to reinforce healthy behaviors.” The organization is in need of coaches and event volunteers. Those looking for something different may want to become SoleMates, training for physical challenges and also doing fundraising. Girls on the Run welcomes groups and organizations to be involved, either in one-day volunteer opportunities or by financially supporting a team for a season.   

Hazel and Paul




Featured in the March 18, 2023 issue of The Independent.
Learn more at GOTRKC.org.


TRAILBLAZING: Central Exchange

The Central Exchange was founded in 1980 by Marjorie Powell Allen and Beth Smith. The 160 founding members included Kay Barnes, Anita Butler, Joan Dillon, Adele Hall, Mamie Hughes, Dorothy…

TRAILBLAZING: Society of Women Engineers

The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) was founded in 1950. The Kansas City chapter, which was created in 1982, currently has more than 150 members. The organization’s focus is on…

TRAILBLAZING: National Congress of Black Women – Kansas City Chapter

Sylvya Stevenson founded the National Congress of Black Women–Kansas City Chapter in 2013; it is an affiliate of the National Congress of Black Women, which was founded by the late…


Terri E. Barnes founded The Nia Project Kansas City in 2020. The organization works to support projects that enable Black women and girls to build confidence and increase their opportunities…