Lillian Dechene, a sophomore at Long Lake Central School, was watching the news one night about the plight of the Syrian refugees.
She saw a video of people loading onto a train and parents being separated from their children. She went online to research more about the crisis in Syria, which is embroiled in civil war.
“Over 1 million Syrian children are refugees and are at risk of being a lost generation,” she said in a phone interview.
Dechene wanted to do something about the situation and decided to organize the “Run for Refugees.” The one-mile walk or run around town will take place this Saturday. Registration is $10 and all proceeds will be donated to Save the Children, a Connecticut-based nonprofit that is assisting more than 5 million Syrian children.
“They try to make the kids have a better life basically because they’re orphaned. They have nothing anymore. They’re alone,” she said.
Dechene, who is also Student Council president, said she is athletic and a run seemed like a good idea. Other council members are helping with organization and sponsoring of the event.
Registration take places at 8 a.m. and the run/walk begins at 9 a.m. Dechene’s dad helped her design the course, which starts at the Long Lake ballfield. It goes up Newcomb Road, then around Southhill Road and loops back to the ball field.
In addition, Dechene is selling orange-and-black wristbands at the event and throughout the month of November to raise additional money.
Checks should be made out to Save the Children. Anyone who would like to donate but cannot run can send checks to Lillian Dechene at P.O. Box 406, Long Lake NY 12847.