Zeta Tau Alpha to hold Run for a Reason philanthropy event

Eric Smith

A 5K run is a grueling task. But add in a T-shirt, breakfast and the cause of raising money for breast cancer education and awareness, and you have one of Washburn University’s most successful student-run philanthropy events.

Run for a Reason is a 5K walk/run held by the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority each year on the university’s campus. Beginning at 9 a.m. this Saturday at 1845 S.W. Jewell Ave., right outside the ZTA chapter house, Washburn students, faculty and staff, along with Topeka community members, have the opportunity to support the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation by participating in the event.

Freshman Jane Billinger, ZTA’s service chair, has worked hard to get Run for a Reason set up, arranging sponsors, getting the informational brochures out to the community, and working on the T-shirt design.

“If we can make people realize that breast cancer is a significant problem and that [Run for a Reason] is a step toward finding a cure and finding a solution for this problem, that is the overall goal,” said Billinger, who has been carrying on the tradition for more than five years. “All of the money that we will be raising will be donated to our philanthropy in hopes of achieving this goal.”

The pink brochure the ZTAs put out pushes the hard facts of breast cancer. According to the brochure, every three minutes a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, and breast cancer will affect one in eight women during her lifetime.

Last year, Run for a Reason raised $2,800 with the registration of 114 participants, according to junior Betsy Baker, former ZTA service chair. Billinger’s goal for this year is to get around 130 participants.

One of last year’s participants, Garrett Love, junior, won the event and plans to run again this year.

“It is definitely an enjoyable experience that is a lot of fun and at the same time benefits a very good cause,” said Love. “The Zetas have done a great job in the past and I hope their success carries on in this upcoming one. I definitely look forward to getting out there again bright and early to support them.”

Registration for the event is $20 and includes a Run for a Reason T-shirt, breakfast muffins and orange juice, provided by Perkins Bakery and Restaurant after the race. Registration forms can be picked up and turned in at the ZTA chapter house and will be accepted through Saturday morning. A registration table will be set up at 8 a.m. For any questions about the event, Billinger can be reached at [email protected]

“You can walk, run, jog, skip, whatever you feel you need to do to get that 5k done,” said Billinger. “If people want to do it, they should. It’s for a good cause. It’s not that hard of a project. We would love to see them out there on the morning of the 28th.”