The 14th annual Kids Helping Kids Fun Walk raised more than $60,000 for Columbus Home Children’s Services, a program of Catholic Charities of East Tennessee. More than 1,200 children and adults participated in an annual family-friendly festival and charity walk at Knoxville Catholic High School on April 1.
Two families, the Blalocks and the Rabensteins, teamed together to be the top fundraiser at the walk, collectively raising more than $600 for Columbus Home. For their effort, they received a free movie each week for a year from Regal Cinemas.
Star 102.1’s Frank Murphy was the master of ceremonies for the event and made shout-outs to the kids as they played on inflatables and participated in fun games. Girl scout volunteers ran fun festival activities, such as cornhole and a cake walk. A children’s art exhibit featured shoe-themed art created by children in the Columbus Home service programs, as well as children from local Catholic schools.
One lucky door prize winner, Linda Kluth, received a green bike from Regions Bank. Food was provided by a variety of vendors, such as Domino’s Pizza, Rita’s Ice, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and Chili’s.
The Kids Helping Kids Fun Walk is a rain-or-shine Knoxville tradition, and when it came time for the fun walk, the families braved some light rain as they followed Father Ragan Schriver and Frank Murphy on a one-mile walk around the stadium and Knoxville Catholic High School’s campus.
“At this year’s Fun Walk, I was blessed once again by the people who turned out for a great afternoon of family fun to benefit a wonderful cause,” said Father Ragan Schriver, executive director of Catholic Charities. “The kids who participated in the walk raised money to help kids their own age in a situation of abuse, neglect or abandonment. There’s no better way to teach our kids how to reach out and help others.”
Columbus Home Children’s Services provide a positive, stable environment for children and youth who are abused, neglected, abandoned or otherwise at-risk to help them achieve a better future. Through its four separate service programs, Columbus Home serves more than 2,000 at-risk children and youth each year.
Columbus Home service programs include in-home abuse prevention, an emergency shelter for children in immediate danger of abuse or other trauma, a group home for teen boys who have been removed from the home by the court system and a court-ordered supervised visitation center for children whose parents are divorced or divorcing.
The 14th annual Kids Helping Kids Fun Walk was presented by Kimberly-Clark. Other sponsors include Covenant Health, Regions Bank, Xinergy, B&W Y-12, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Star 102.1, WBIR-TV and the News Sentinel.
Left Photo: Father Ragan Schriver (far left), executive director of Catholic Charities of East Tennessee, poses with the Blalocks and the Rabensteins, the families who teamed up to raise more than $620 for Columbus Home Children’s Services during the Kids Helping Kids Fun Walk at Knoxville Catholic High School on April 1. The families received free movie tickets for a year from Regal Cinemas for being the top fundraisers at the walk. Pictured from left to right are (front row) Daniel Blalock, Martin Rabenstein, Brooke Rabenstein, (back row) Father Ragan Schriver, Kristi Blalock, Megan Blalock, Angie Missimer and Julie Rabenstein.
Right Phot0: Bailey Curtis, 2, gets her face painted by Catholic Charities of East Tennessee volunteer Kathy Cameron during the 14th annual Kids Helping Kids Fun Walk to benefit Columbus Home Children’s Services at Knoxville Catholic High School on April 1. The annual event featured an afternoon of family-friendly activities and a fun walk to benefit the 2,000 at-risk children and youth served by Columbus Home Children’s Services each year.