Twenty young runners from Matrix Parents Network and Resource Center completed a 5k portion of the Santa Rosa Marathon on Aug. 27.
The Mighty Milers is an inclusive running program for children of all ages and abilities. The experience of belonging created during the training builds confidence in all of the runners and is especially empowering for those who have special needs, organizers said. Every child, regardless of ability, should have the opportunity to set, train for and reach a goal.
Coach Jonathan D. Feliz serves as the senior enlisted adviser and has been serving on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps since 2003. The Matrix Mighty Milers team is led by Matrix Programs Manager Julie Feliz, Feliz and Ana Acosta, their senior bilingual parent adviser.
A 2021 Giving Marin Community Partnership grant winner, the Matrix nonprofit organization formed to serve families of children with special needs in the San Francisco/North Bay counties of Marin, Napa, Solano and Sonoma. Forming a network of parents, they decided to educate, support and encourage families who were facing the same challenges they had faced alone.