COLUMBUS, OH – One in five children is faced with a mental disorder before the age of 12. To help increase national awareness, break stigmas and raise funds for much-needed children and adolescent behavioral health research, Big Lots Foundation presents “The Butterfly Run.”
The event is debuting in Charlotte, N.C., on Oct. 20 after premiering in Columbus, Ohio, on Aug. 11. Phoenix, Ariz., will be the site of the last Butterfly Run of the year on Nov. 3 and was the location of the first Butterfly Run last fall.
A family-fitness event focusing on reducing the stigma often associated with behavioral disorders and mental illnesses, The Butterfly Run also will feature Butterfly Village where families can participate in pre and post-race activities.
“Serving everyone like family is at the heart of our mission,” said Tim Johnson, Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Big Lots. “Each mile means more hope for children and their families dealing with these challenges. Every step we take is a step toward better understanding behavioral health.”
Proceeds from The Butterfly Run will benefit behavioral health research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Nationwide Children’s is America’s largest pediatric hospital and research center and as part of its research mission, it strives to gather new knowledge and share it globally to improve outcomes for children everywhere.
Seventy-five percent of lifetime mental illnesses are present by age 24. With the soaring demand for mental health treatment for young people comes a steep rise in the complexity and severity of their illnesses. Together, we can work toward a new future that overcomes the stigma often associated with mental health issues, while also linking arms to fund research into the causes and best treatment options.
In 2016, Big Lots and Big Lots Foundation announced a $50 million transformational gift to construct the Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Scheduled to open in 2020, the Pavilion will be a freestanding facility fully dedicated to children and adolescents with behavioral health conditions. It will be the largest behavioral health treatment and research center dedicated to children and adolescents on a pediatric medical campus in the U.S.
“We are excited to bring The Butterfly Run to Charlotte,” said Steve Testa, president, Nationwide Children’s Hospital Foundation. “It is critical to start the important conversation about pediatric and adolescent behavioral and mental health and it extends to all parts of the country. Together with the support of our partner Big Lots, we will continue to advocate for this vital cause.”
McAlpine Creek Park (8711 Monroe Rd., Charlotte, N.C. 28212) is the site for the Oct. 20 Butterfly Run in Charlotte, which will include a 5K and Kids Fun Dash. Check in for both events is 7:30 a.m. with the 5K beginning at 9:15 a.m. and the Fun Dash beginning at 9 a.m. To register and for more information, log on to butterflyrun.org and select the Charlotte location.