The D&L Blog

Delaware & Lehigh - Health & Wellness Partner Spotlight: Girls on the Run

By Imogen Wirth-Granlund, Program Coordinator

We got to know our regional councils of Girls on the Run (GOTR) this spring through Get Your Tail on the Trail, our partnership with St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN). For the past 25 years, GOTR has empowered girls (grades 3 to 8), through running and a life skills focused curriculum taught by coaches. Research demonstrates that GOTR participants gain confidence, self-esteem, and peer connections at a crucial time in girls’ development. 

Amidst school closures related to the COVID-19 pandemic, Girls on the Run Lehigh Valley  and Girls on the Run Pocono, needed to think outside the box. Typically, their programs take place at local school district facilities, including race tracks and indoor gyms. Longtime supporter and funder of the two councils, SLUHN proposed Get Your Tail on the Trail as a way to accommodate GOTR programming outside the schools. 

To prep for their end-of-season 5K runs, GOTR Lehigh Valley and Pocono engaged in Race Around the Globe, a friendly virtual competition. Both councils registered as Community Organizations on Get Your Tail on the Trail and encouraged girls, their families, and friends to join the councils in logging miles. We developed a Trail of the Week calendar for participants in each council to explore the D&L Trail, as well as THE LINK Trails Network and Northeastern Pennsylvania Trails Forum. GOTR Lehigh Valley and Pocono promoted their respective featured trails via Facebook with weekly prizes and videos out on the trails. 

Joining Get Your Tail on the Trail made participants feel like part of a larger community during a time of social distancing. Dolores Everett, GOTR Pocono Council Director, said the Trail of the Week calendar kept everybody motivated and moving on trails they’d never explored before. Liz Fones, GOTR Lehigh Valley Council Director, was thrilled to discover THE LINK Trails Network connected many of the Lehigh Valley’s recreational trails. The two councils held 5K races on regional trails, including the South Bethlehem Greenway and Bushkill Township Trail – both part of THE LINK Trails Network. 

Check the Get Your Tail on the Trail Organizational Leaderboard and you’ll see the Pocono council edged ahead to outrun the Lehigh Valley in the Race Around the Globe! We congratulate both councils on an exciting spring season and look forward to continuing our partnership. If you’d like to get more involved, both councils are looking for volunteer coaches for the fall season. Contact Dolores at [email protected] for GOTR Pocono and Liz at [email protected] for GOTR Lehigh Valley. If you know a girl who wants to join, visit Girls on the Run to connect with her council. 

Want to get your tail on the trail this Summer? There’s still time to join us for our annual 165-Mile Challenge, which ends November 8th – so Register Today! Visit our website to learn more about joining as a Corporate or Community Organization at: .