WILMINGTON — CMH Regional Health System has been a sponsor of the annual Heather’s Hope Lickety Split 5K run for several years, but decided this year that it was time to double the impact.
Heather’s Hope is a non-profit group formed in 2010 by friends and family of Heather James.
Heather, a 2003 Wilmington High School graduate, died in 2008 at age 23 from complications with type 1 diabetes.
In the organization’s first four years, it raised over $20,000 for diabetes research and care, which has helped patients both locally and nationally. Heather’s Hope has evolved its mission to focus exclusively on helping those with diabetes in Clinton County.
One of its cornerstone projects each year is to send local kids to Camp Korelitz, the American Diabetes Association’s week-long residential camping program for children living with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, ages 8-15, held at Camp Joy in Clarksville.
This regional camp program is an exciting opportunity for children from four states to meet other children living with diabetes while engaging in traditional camp activities.
Each year, Heather’s Hope hosts the Lickety Split 5K, with the goal of sending three kids to summer camp at a significantly reduced rate or free of charge. This year, CMH wanted to make sure they could send twice as many kids to camp, and committed to donating the funds to send three kids to Camp Korelitz, bringing this year’s total to six.
Lance Beus, CEO of CMH Regional Health System, spoke to the importance of this project for CMH.
“This was an opportunity for us to help those in our community struggling with diabetes, and we’re proud to work with Heather’s Hope to extend the great work they’re doing for kids in our community,” Beus said. “Heather’s mother, Gretchen, has been part of our CMH family for years, and it means a lot to us that we can support the work she and her husband, along with Heather’s close friends, are doing to give hope to those in our community fighting this disease.”
This year’s Lickety Split 5K was held on Saturday, June 9 as part of Rotary’s annual Banana Split Festival.
Those interested in learning more about the ongoing work of Heather’s Hope and future events can visit www.heathershope.org. Heather’s Hope is a non-profit organization and a member of the Clinton County Foundation.