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Sponsor a child through CASA of Lexington and make Ky. Sports Radio’s Ryan Lemond run a mile

There is still time to sponsor an abused or neglected child through Court Appointed Special Advocates of Lexington and make Ryan Lemond run a mile.

Lemond, of Kentucky Sports Radio fame, agreed to run – not walk – one mile for every child who is sponsored through March 1 as part of CASA of Lexington’s virtual Bourbon and the Bayou event.

Melynda Jamison and Ryan Lemond (Photo from CASA of Lexington)

Lemond emceed the virtual gala with CASA of Lexington Executive Director Melynda Jamison, who pitched the idea of running for kids to Lemond during the Feb. 12 event.

“You’ve got this sneaky little smile on your face. I don’t know what you’ve cooked up here,” Lemond said as Jamison began proposing her friendly challenge.

“I’m thinking before the 2022 Bourbon and the Bayou, you run one mile for every kid who gets a sponsor,” Jamison said. “And maybe you’ll be in some new duds by then!”

“I need to get in a little better shape because of all my COVID weight,” Lemond joked. “So if we sponsor 100 kids, I need to run 100 miles before next year’s Bourbon and the Bayou?”

“That’s right but don’t be a whiner about it,” Jamison joked, before explaining for every mile Lemond ran, she would run.

Jamison, an avid runner, also agreed to train Lemond so he could accomplish the challenge.

“Can I start by walking?” Lemond asked.

“Yes, but those won’t count,” Jamison said with a smile. “You have to start where you’re at.”

A run tracker for Lemond’s progress at meeting the challenge has been set up at casaoflexington.org. Already 43 children were sponsored at $1,000 per child leading up to and during the virtual event. More sponsorships are still coming in. After the March 1 deadline, CASA of Lexington will announce the final number of miles Lemond will have to run.

Normally an in-person “Fat Friday” gala at the Carrick House, the Bourbon and the Bayou event went virtual this year due to the pandemic. The event is CASA of Lexington’s largest single fundraiser each year. It has helped the non-profit provide volunteer advocates for hundreds of abused and neglected children in Fayette, Bourbon, Woodford and Scott counties.

CASA volunteers visit monthly with children who are in family court cases and provide reports to judges, helping them make better-informed decisions. Children who receive a CASA volunteer are more likely to receive services they need, more likely to do well in school, and half as likely to re-enter the foster care system after finding a safe, permanent home.

Supporters sponsor children through Bourbon and Bayou by covering the costs associated with giving a child a CASA volunteer for one year – $1,000.

Thanks to generous sponsors and donors and a wildly successful silent auction, this year’s virtual event once again made it possible for well over 100 children to receive advocates. But the pandemic also limited the fundraiser in some important ways, and the fundraising total is currently well below what it was in 2020.

“There are hundreds of abused and neglected children in the family court system right now who would have brighter futures if a CASA volunteer was available to take their case,” Jamison said. “The more people who step up and sponsor a child now, the more of those children we can serve.”

You can sponsor a child by visiting e.givesmart.com. You can also watch a recording of the 2021 Bourbon and the Bayou event at BandB2021.givesmart.com. And you can keep up with Lemond’s running progress at www.casaoflexington.org.

From CASA of Lexington

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