VERONA, NJ — More than 4,000 people came to Essex County’s Verona Park on Saturday, June 11, to celebrate the courage and resilience of children in this area being treated for cancer and blood disorders. The Valerie Fund Walk & JAG Physical Therapy 5K Run is a fine example of a small community event with a big heart and a total of $5,352,500 has been raised over the last five years.
The grassroots efforts of hundreds of teams, individuals and local businesses are responsible for the success of the Walk/5K Run, now in its 11th year. Corporate sponsors include JAG Physical Therapy, Atlantic Health, RWJ Barnabas Health, U.S. Trust – Bank of America Private Wealth Management, Investors Bank and, new this year, sponsorship support from The Dannon Company. Burger King and a trio of ShopRite families have brought fundraising for The Valerie Fund into their restaurants and stores doing promotional campaigns at registers, which has generated more than half a million dollars to date.
The popularity of the Walk/5K Run and other events throughout the year enables The Valerie Fund to maintain one of the largest health care networks of its kind in the country. There are seven, nonprofit Valerie Fund Centers located in New Jersey, New York and metropolitan Philadelphia, including a new center that opened July 1 at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital in Paterson.
Photo Courtesy of Bunny Flanders