A portion of funding will help to provide mental health support for first responders.

WESTFIELD, NJ — Coronavirus couldn’t stop one of Westfield’s most anticipated fundraising 5Ks.

The annual run held in memory of Westfield High School freshman Greta Schoenemann, who died when a tree branch fell on her in 2002, is going virtual this year and partnering with Imagine, a Center for Coping With Loss, which provides free, year-round grief support for children.

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“Imagine is continuing with Greta’s Run virtually because we rely 100% on private donations,” said Ben Nanna, co-founder of Greta’s Run For Imagine. “It’s critical that we bring in the funding to continue supporting the people we already serve, and to meet the rising needs for grief support related to COVID-19, which now includes mental health support for first responders. As the pandemic continues, we anticipate a rapid increase in the number of people who will need Imagine’s services.”

Greta’s Run enters its seventh year.

“Together, we will raise the money we need to continue providing free, life-saving grief support, education and training,” said Imagine’s executive director, Mary Robinson, in a news release.

Participants are asked to run individually any time leading up to Sunday, May 17, the race announced.

Here is how you can participate:

  • SET UP A Greta’s Run for Imagine page. Donate and encourage your friends to give. Then join the virtual event in one or more of the following ways: 
  • RUN, WALK, ROLL: participate individually anytime, anywhere, in your Greta’s Run shirt the week leading up to Sunday, May 17.
  • SHARE YOUR STORY: post about the person/ people you’re participating in memory of to social media, using #GretasRun.
  • COLOR A DRAGONFLY: then place it in your window and post a photo on social media to show your support.

Details about prizes for top fundraisers and social media posts, and shirt pick up/ drop-off are to be announced. Follow Greta’s Run on Facebook and Instagram for updates. To register, sponsor, donate and learn more, visit: imaginenj.org/gretasrun.

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