The Morgan Park Junior Woman’s Club will present the 7th annual Work Out to Wipe Out Domestic Violence (WOWO) Benefit Day on Sat., Mar. 24, raising awareness about the serious issue of domestic violence, and raising funds for the local domestic violence agency, A New Direction Beverly Morgan Park (AND). The agency provides counseling, legal advocacy, education, and support at no charge to families affected by domestic violence.
As the event organizer, the Morgan Park Junior Woman’s Club recruits Benefit Day partners among local fitness businesses and professionals. One goal for this year’s event is to add new fitness centers and activities, including a center and activity for elementary and high school students. Morgan Park Junior Dena O’Reilly said, “Last year several parents wanted their children to be able to join them. This is a great idea.” St. Barnabas Parish and Bethany Union Church will be the designated sites for family exercise with an all-ages Zumba class as the group exercise event.
Several new partners who will be hosting WOWO events this year. Mother McAuley High School’s National Honor Society (NHS) and Action Reaction Club are hosting WOWO activities around their annual Ice Cream Social, which will be held at the school on Mar. 22. Students will help to raise awareness about domestic violence and raise funds for A New Direction.
“We love the idea of supporting Work Out to Wipe Out Domestic Violence Benefit Day,” said Cathy O’Grady, World Languages Faculty and McAuley’s NHS moderator. “Using our Mighty Mac strength to give strength to other women makes for a great day. Exercise is a fantastic tool to help both physically and mentally.”
In addition to Mother McAuley’s participation, Cathy O’Loughlin, the 2018 facilities coordinator for the Morgan Park Juniors, said several new businesses will offer classes on the Benefit Day this year, including Treadfit Beverly, Barre It All, Blazin’ Cycle, Fit4Mom-Palos-OrlandPark, Light House Yoga and Fitness, Running Excels, Sculpt and Shred and Stone Age Cross Fit.
“It’s amazing how every year we are able to offer participants a great variety of workout sites. There truly is something for everyone,” O’Loughlin said.
Through a generous sponsorship, Marquette Bank provided funds for WOWO T-shirts. Morgan Park Junior Karen Meyer, chairman for this year’s event said, “This is the second year in a row that Marquette Bank has sponsored WOWO. We are so grateful for their commitment and their help in raising awareness and funds to end domestic violence in our community.”
Meyer added that Bullpen Sports, a baseball and training facility in Crestwood, and Beverly Therapists, donated funds for the event’s printed materials.
A New Direction Beverly Morgan Park is in its seventh year of providing confidential counseling and legal advocacy services for victims of domestic violence, many of whom live in the neighborhood or surrounding suburbs.
“Domestic violence is a reality in every community and we need to work together to create awareness and quality programs to fight it,” said Jessica McCarihan, AND Board President. “WOWO is our second largest fundraiser of the year, thanks to the efforts of the Morgan Park Juniors. With no state or federal funding, the monies raised are critical to the agency maintaining services.”
To participate in the Work Out to Wipe Out Domestic Violence Benefit Day, visit www.anewdirectionbmp.org/wowo to register online for a suggested donation of $25 and select an activity offered by one of the many fitness centers, churches, schools and businesses on the Benefit Day schedule. Onsite registration on the day of the event is welcome if space at the facility permits.
For those who can’t participate on Mar. 24, donations to AND and purchases of the mint-green event t-shirt ($15) can be made at the same website. T-shirt supplies are limited. T-shirts will be available for pick up on Mar. 21, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Belle Up Boutique, 1915 W. 103rd St.
The GFWC IL Morgan Park Junior Woman’s Club is a group of women dedicated to making a difference in their community through volunteer service. Since its inception in 1934, the Club has actively initiated various service projects contributing to the quality of life in Beverly/Morgan Park. To learn more about membership and volunteer opportunities visit morganparkjrs.wordpress.com.
Photo: From left to right, Donna Dalton, President of the Morgan Park Junior Woman’s Club, Karen Truitt, Regional Sales Manager for Marquette Bank, and Jessica McCarihan, AND Board President.