A good cause, a good workout and pie — what more could one ask for in a fundraising event?
Two UCHealth employees who enjoy running, pies and a good pun have organized a unique fun run to benefit the patients of UCHealth Mountain Crest Behavioral Healthcare Center.
“We wanted something catchy and different to appeal to the community to come run,” said Dr. Jillian Busch, a psychiatrist at Mountain Crest. “All of our personal struggles, careers, etc. can be put aside while we all race for a cause and enjoy it in the process. It helps our minds and bodies to have that common goal, all while having fun, getting healthy and incorporating a new, fun idea into the race scene: pies.”
The event, which is the weekend before Pi Day on March 14, will round out its theme by having pies at the finish line for participants to enjoy.
Busch and co-coordinator Jennifer Paxton, Mountain Crest’s offsite clinic coordinator, hope the event not only helps raise money but also brings an awareness of the services the center provides for the community.
“Our patients often get forgotten about due to the stigma around mental health, even though it’s a huge concern nationwide,” Busch said. “Mental health is like a physical illness. Our brains are connected to our bodies. Although sometimes mental illness is affected by social and psychological situations, it is also a biological entity. Due to this, many times patients really have little control over the fact that they struggle with mental illness.”
One hundred percent of the proceeds from the race will go to benefit the center’s patients. This may include the purchase of exercise equipment, Busch said.
“So many of our patients need to burn energy, but we don’t have the capacity to allow them to run outside,” she said. “Exercise is a great way to improve mental health too.
“By lowering the stigma, we can help these patients be empowered to be who they are and not be defined by their mental illness,” Busch continued. “Offering compassion, hope, support and empathy for our most vulnerable patients in this community will make us united and strong — and we can do it while running for pie.”
For more information or to register, visit their website: pidaypiK.wordpress.com. The event starts at 8 a.m. at Mountain Crest, 4601 Corbett Drive in Fort Collins.