Students of Champion Academy help at Lilac Festival’s races

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Sunday was the last day of the 2023 Rochester Lilac Festival, starting with the Lilac 5K, 10K, and Dunkin’ Dash.

Teens from the Champion Academy were there to volunteer at the races. They helped set up for the event, handed out water, cheered on participants, and provided medals to the winners.

“It’s just about being in the sun, being with their fellow champions, being with the mentors, soaking in the sun, encouraging the runners as they cross the finish line, being able to give out the trophies. It’s just a great event to be here,” said Christopher Rush, executive director of Champion Academy.

Champion Academy is a trauma-responsive mentoring program providing urban teens in poverty the critical accountability, consistency and support necessary to overcome obstacles and maximize their potential in school, at home and in the community.