UCF's Psi Mu chapter of Chi Omega will host its seventh annual Race Love Wish 5K event to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central and Northern Florida.
On Sunday from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., participants will gather on campus at Memory Mall for Chi Omega's first philanthropy of the year. Registration will begin at 8 a.m., and the race is set to start at 9 a.m.
Each year, the Race Love Wish event raises about $10,000 for Make-A-Wish, a non-profit organization that grants wishes to children nationwide with life-threatening medical conditions. This year Chi Omega has set a goal of raising $15,000.
Through the event, the sisters of Chi Omega will donate 100 percent of the money raised to help children and families in local areas.
Illona Jove, director of community service for Chi Omega, is in charge of getting her sisters involved in the community through all philanthropic events.
At this family-friendly event, Jove said there will be children stations with coloring books and fun dancing to cheer on the runners, as well as a DJ to get the adrenaline rushing for those participating in the race.
There will also be a Wish Kid, who is a child with a life-threatening disease, at the event to start off the race.
"It's amazing to see how happy and touched his family gets to see all the support," Jove said. "I will probably sit back and smile at the runners, knowing that we wouldn't be there if it wasn't for them."
The sisters of the sorority have spent a few months gathering sponsors, runners and donations, while sharing stories and wishes they have granted in previous years.
"Granting wishes is why we do it; giving our time to raise money for this incredible cause is why we are all here," Jove said.
Make-A-Wish has been Chi Omega's National Philanthropy since 2002, and the sorority has raised more than 12.9 million dollars since then. It has also spent more than 500,000 hours volunteering for the philanthropy.
"We are walkin' it out for wishes, one step at a time," Jove said.
For those interested in attending the event, registration is $25. There is also an option to sign up as a virtual runner, or simply donate at https://fundraising.active.com/event/RLW2015.
Rachel Stuart is a Digital Producer for the Central Florida Future. Follow her on Twitter at @RachSage or email her at RachelS@CentralFloridaFuture.com.