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Springing to action for those in need

Run/walk for Harvest House scheduled for March 18

By Andrew Wagstaff
Maritime Runner
March 1, 2017

MONCTON, N.B. – It’s about much more than just a run or a walk.
The upcoming Spring 2 Action event in Moncton happens to be one of three major fundraisers of the year for Harvest House Atlantic, a community centre that provides shelter for the homeless in Moncton and a wide range of other services.
Although last year’s event had a running option, it was more focused on the walk, according to communications/events coordinator Justin Kelsey. This year he wanted to do things a little different.
“One thing I wanted to do was make it an exclusive run,” he said. “We got rid of the 5K walk, and now we have an exclusive 2K walk and an exclusive 5K run.”
For the running portion of the event they have partnered with The Running Room for the first time, and he said that has resulted in quite a few runners getting involved.
The event will take place in downtown Moncton, starting at the Moncton Press Club at 160 Assomption Blvd, and the route will go right by many of the businesses that have come on board as sponsors. Many of those businesses, such as Piatto Pizzeria, Starbucks and Degenhardts European Sausages, will be on hand to share their tasty products.
“So everyone walking will be taking in calories and burning calories at the same time,” said Kelsey, with a laugh.
He is hoping to see 500 people register for the event, raising $50,000 for the cause, every cent of which will go towards the operation of the publicly-funded shelter and community centre, which always serves as the first welcome to those coming to Harvest House for its many services, including food, shelter, clothing, GED, addictions services and more.
“It always starts with a meal,” said Kelsey. “But we don’t believe in just providing a meal and then allowing someone who could be helped further to go back into drug addiction. We want to lower the homeless rate, we want to see people find the confidence to regain their lives back.”
The need for these services has never been greater, according to Kelsey.
Last year alone, Harvest House served 55,000 meals, and sheltered more than 1,400 people, with over 7,000 nights stayed. The shelter even provides a room for families who find themselves out on the street for whatever reason - a room that Kelsey said gets used far too often.
Those wishing to participate can visit to register or download a pledge sheet, or visit the Harvest House office at 162 High Street.