Running for Survivors
We are so lucky to have a generous community that cares about survivors.
Josh Nadzam, Co-Founder and Board President of On the Move Art Studio, shares his personal connection with intimate partner abuse and how he uses his love of running to support survivors.
Thank you, Josh!
The first phone call I ever made was at 5 years old. I called 911 because my father was choking my mother up against a wall. Making a plea to the dispatcher was the most I could do then, but once I became an adult I was determined to do much more.
One way I could do this was by leveraging my ability to run to raise awareness for eradicating domestic violence and raise some funds for survivors along the way. After five years on the Track and Field and Cross Country Team at the University of Kentucky, I had quite a bit of training that prepared me to do just that.
My first attempt at this was in 2014 when I ran from Lexington to Frankfort (25.5 miles) for HB 8, a bill being considered to protect dating violence survivors in Kentucky. On March 6, 2014, “Josh’s Run to Frankfort” took place, running from the Fifth Third Pavilion to the steps of the capitol, raising nearly $5,000 along the way.
The second and third times I leveraged this ability was when I qualified for the Boston Marathon. I decided to dedicate each race to survivors of domestic violence, and created a campaign called Bluegrass to Boston for Survivors. In 2016 and in 2019 I asked friends and family to support me by making donations that would go to GreenHouse17, with the former raising $3,000 and the latter raising $2,215. Each time it was so incredible and moving to see so many people passionate about supporting survivors.
Each one of us has at least one unique skill we can use to benefit others and help make the world a better place. Some of us can sing or draw, dance, play music, photograph the world, cook, or knit. I’m fortunate to be able to run and have been able to use that ability to try to rally support for survivors. I’m endlessly grateful that GreenHouse17 does the incredible work they do so that one day, no 5-year-old child will ever have to call 911 again to stop one parent from abusing the other. And because of GreenHouse17, I am certain we can accomplish this.
*Images in front of the GreenHouse17 sign were taken by Ayna Lorenzo of Mothwing Photography