Father-to-Be Padilla Plans Boston Marathon Run in Support of ‘Girls on the Run’ Motivational Charity

Luke Padilla of Haverhill. (Courtesy photograph.)

It’s International Women’s Month and Luke Padilla of Haverhill is focusing his Boston Marathon fundraising on an organization devoted to “using running to empower and motivate young girls by building their confidence through accomplishment.”

Padilla decided last fall to run the Marathon upon learning he would become a dad this June. Before his baby girl comes along, he said his Marathon participation would be an exciting way to prepare for his new life change. Even though running is familiar territory for Padilla, qualifying for the Boston Marathon is quite the feat and he decided the best way to guarantee a spot is to fundraise for a charity, “Girls on the Run.”

“As a high school cross country coach, and as a coach for the Girls on the Run programs, I’ve been struck by how much of an impact running and staying active can have on someone’s life, and Girls on the Run takes that to a whole new level by focusing on the strength and power of young girls,” he said.

Padilla, raised in Haverhill and found his way back in 2017, explained it is a fit to run for an organization that works to empower young girls. Besides being a high school cross country coach and a life-long runner, he is a manager of a child development and soccer program.

In order to qualify to run for a charity in the Boston Marathon, Padilla committed to raising $10,000 for Girls on the Run. After months of fundraising through raffles, peer-to-peer campaigns, soccer and board game tournaments and more, he is turning to the public to raise the final $2,500. He and his wife Erin, director of Creative Haverhill, seek 50 people to donate $50 by April 10.

Since its International Women’s Month, the Padillas hope people are interested in supporting a charity that is entirely focused on the positive development of young girls.

Donations may be made here.

According to its website, Girls on the Run “designs programming that strengthens third to eighth grade girls’ social, emotional, physical and behavioral skills to successfully navigate life experiences. At an age when girls are constantly trying to measure up to ideas of who they should be or how they should act, Girls on the Run leads them to understand that their potential isn’t just enormous — it’s beyond measure.”

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