Starting today, all across the U.S., people are joining the fight to protect children. They’re walking, running, biking, swimming...all to help raise awareness and funds to support the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. And they’re doing it one step at a time.
“Miles for Hope” runs (pun intended!) the entire month of September and it’s a great time to get outside with your family and friends and help bring attention to missing and exploited children. What started as a cycling event in New York to honor the life of Sara Anne Wood, who was abducted and murdered in 1993, has led to a national event where everyone can participate.
Now in its second year, we hope to get even more people across the country outside, having fun and making a difference for children. It’s also an opportunity for the families of missing children to raise awareness of their missing loved one.
Sydney West’s family and a team of supporters will be riding in her honor in Buffalo, New York on Sept. 3, nearly one year after she disappeared from San Francisco, California. Each member of the team will bike what they can, some as much as 100 miles. But together they hope to accumulate 2,800 miles—the distance between Sydney’s home in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and where she was last seen in San Francisco.
Sydney’s mother, Kimberly Kadzik West, is from Buffalo and the tight-knit community is rallying in support of her missing daughter. She will be biking in Chapel Hill while Sydney’s father, Jay West, will join the 100-mile bike ride in Buffalo. Friends and family who can’t be in Buffalo will join the ride remotely, hoping to spread the word across the entire country.
So, whether you join a team or get out there on your own, everyone can find a way to get involved. Not a runner or cyclist? No problem! Get your miles in however works best for you. Dance, kayak, hike, rollerblade...finally dust off that rowing machine in your basement...you decide!
It’s not too late to register to support NCMEC and the families of missing and exploited children. And we ask that you share your journey on social to help spread awareness even farther! Make sure you tag @missingkids and use #MilesforHope.
See you out there!