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Marathoners raise money for disability support at Cupid’s Chase

February 10, 2024 | Online Article

For many, Valentine’s Day is about cherishing the ones we love, and cherishing can take many forms. One such form is running a charity 5k.

“We’re here to bring awareness to the need for housing and employment services for people with disabilities,” said executive director for Community Options New York Ashley Gamba. “Community Options is a national nonprofit. We’re across eleven states and we serve over 5,000 individuals nationwide.”

To support Community Options, Cupid’s Chase has been held annually nationwide for the past 28 years. In Binghamton alone, $21,000 was raised by last year’s event. With a field of 190 runners earlier today, gamba hoped the support would be even higher.

“It’s really amazing to have such a great turnout,” Gamba said. “We have parents, volunteers, community partners all coming together to help raise funds for the individuals we serve.”

Parents like U.S. Representative Marc Molinaro, who ran alongside fellow parents and allies in the 5k.

“As the parent of a child with a disability I can tell you that every time community causes are recognized for our loved ones living with intellectual, physical and developmental disabilities is really empowering,” Molinaro said. “It’s uplifting, and as a community it not only helps us to bridge divides but break down barriers and create opportunities.”

Because for these runners, it isn’t about who crosses the finish line first. It’s about bringing home the biggest victory of all — increased support for their loved ones with disabilities.