Burnt Store Marina Fitness, Racquet & Pool Club is sponsoring its first 5K Run/Walk for Kids in SWFL, a fundraising event to support the Guardian ad Litem Foundation, 20th Judicial Circuit.

The race, which is open to runners and walkers of all abilities, will be held Dec. 11 at Burnt Store Marina in Punta Gorda. Proceeds will support the Guardian ad Litem Foundation’s Children’s Needs Program, which helps meet the health, educational and social needs of children in foster care or temporary custody. The program pays for “extras” like birthday parties, tutoring, summer camp programs, new clothing, movie tickets, and registration fees for clubs and sports.

“We’ve always had a strong sense of community in Southwest Florida, and everyone’s collective response to Hurricane Ian proved our strength to the entire nation,” said Jessica Stanfield, executive director of the Guardian ad Litem Foundation. “We’re so appreciative of Burnt Store Marina residents and staff for hosting this event, which will allow our volunteer child advocates to provide children with access to resources so they can feel like ‘normal’ kids.”

The Guardian ad Litem Foundation supports court-appointed volunteer child advocates who represent Southwest Florida youth who have been abused, neglected or abandoned as they navigate the judicial, education and child welfare systems. Advocates represent children in Charlotte, Lee, Collier, Hendry and Glades counties.

The 5K Run/Walk for Kids in SWFL will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 11 at Burnt Store Marina Fitness, Racquet & Pool Club at 3085 Matecumbe Key Road in Punta Gorda. The registration fee is $30 per runner or walker; children 12 and under can run or walk for free. Following the 5K Run/Walk, participants can enjoy a light lunch, music and an awards ceremony.

To register for the 5K Run/Walk, please visit VoicesForKids.org/5K-run.