MILLBURN, NJ - Senior Scouts and Millburn Township students Aleksia Kulp (Millburn High School) and Alisa Chokshi (Pingry School) are on a Leadership Journey, a scouting program that encourages girls at every age to make the world a better place.

Since the beginning of the year, Leksi and Alisa with members of Troop 20491 have been supporting The Valerie Fund prepare for the upcoming 5K run and walk.

The Valerie Fund is a non-profit organization that provides medical care, counseling and other services to the families of children with cancer and blood disorders. The organization was founded by Sue and Ed Goldstein who lost their daughter, Valerie, to cancer in 1976. The Goldsteins were determined that no family should travel a long distance to receive medical care as they had to since no there were no comprehensive care facilities for children with cancer and blood disorders in New Jersey when Valerie was ill. So the Goldsteins, along with a group of friends, started fundraising from their living room. 

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In 1977, all the fundraising led to the opening of New Jersey's first pediatric oncology facility at Summit’s Overlook Hospital.  Today there are seven Valerie Fund Children’s Centers for Cancer and Blood Disorders in New Jersey, New York and the Philadelphia area providing care to more than 4,000 children and their families each year. 

On Saturday, June 11, in Essex County's Verona Park, The Valerie Fund is hosting the 2016 Valerie Fund Walk & JAG Physical 5K Run to help support children with cancer and blood disorders. The fund is hoping to raise at least $1 million. So far, it has raised more than $728,000, according to its website

Local sponsors for the walk and 5K run include Atlantic Health, Burger King, Investors Bank, Barnabas Health, the Inserra, Saker and Village ShopRite Families, and JAG Physical Therapy, underwriter of the 5K run. Complimentary beverages and food will be provided, as well as entertainment, which will include carnival activities, live music and face painting. Girl Scouts from local Troop 20491 will be helping distribute water to participants. 

“The individuals and businesses donating to the Walk have made it a priority to support the communities in which their employees live and work. We applaud their commitment and willingness to give back,” said Bunny Flanders, Director of Marketing for The Valerie Fund
There is online registration for both the walk and 5K run on The Valerie Fund website. On the day of the walk and run, June 11, registration for the 5K run starts at 7 a.m. and the race begins at 8:30 a.m. The registration cost for the run is $35. For more information about the 5K, please visit  Registration for the walk is at 8:30 a.m. and it begins at 10 a.m. The registration cost is $25. For more information on the walk, please visit