Lupus Residents to Run Marathon in Haiti for Education

"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps."

A scripture from Proverbs 16:9 which Shelley Cooper and Robin Hurst are taking with them as they race in the Second Annual Ouanaminthe Marathon in Haiti to raise money and awareness for the country which has been beset with disaster.

The marathon in Haiti combines two things in Hurst's life she holds dear, running and education. Hurst said she runs as a way to keep herself balanced in life.

"It is a natural anti-depressant and I love being out with my dog enjoying nature," Hurst said. "You do not need any fancy clothes to run. It is something anyone who can walk can do. The fact all the proceeds from the support for the marathon goes towards education is the biggest reason of all for me to run. Having access to an education has meant my personal and professional dreams were able to come true. As someone who grew up in a low socio-economic status, I saw education was my way out of poverty. Education has meant a fulfillment of my professional aspirations as I am now an associate professor at the University of Missouri-Columbia. This professional career path, made possible by education, has also meant I have been fortunate enough to fulfill my childhood dreams of running an equine rescue. With the help of my Dad, we care for over 45 horses on our farms. Without access to education, none of this would have been possible for me."

Running has made a change in Cooper's life as well.

For more of this story check out the Dec. 14 issue of the California Democrat.

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