‘Run for the House’ walk/run to benefit House of Compassion ministry

Andi Walker, administrative assistant at Marshalltown’s House of Compassion, had never planned a 5K walk/run and 10K fundraising event before.

But she didn’t have to go far for help.

Jill Byerly, of State Center, Nile and Gloria Dielschneider, of Conrad, and Vern Jefferson, a Marshalltown police officer, have all pitched in to make the planning of the inaugural “Run for the House” on Sept. 7.

The “House” is Marshalltown’s House of Compassion overnight shelter and soup kitchen.

A safe and well-attended walk/run is important, as proceeds will be used by the House of Compassion in its year round ministry of serving the homeless, patrons of its soup kitchen, and residents who qualify for other services offered by the nonprofit organization.

The fundraiser comes at a critical time.

“Money is tight for everyone now,” Walker said. “And unfortunately, we have had to suspend a vital part of our medical assistance program due to low funding In years past.”

Walker said the House of Compassion was previously able to help families pay on old or outstanding medical bills out of the allocated $100 per year, per family. This year however, it is only able to help eligible families obtain prescription vouchers and dental vouchers.

For families with an outstanding account balance who are unable to be seen by a health care professional, it makes the upcoming cold and flu season daunting, she said.

Also daunting are the average number of clients the House of Compassion serves each month

The homeless shelter is averaging 24 guests or 212 nights of use per month, 530 families per month utilize the supply closet and 1,493 people per month visit the soup kitchen.

Walker said the walk-run was picked as a fundraiser because it is fun and a “win-win” for all.

The 5K is open to walkers and runners and the 10K for runners only. There is a $25 entry fee by Aug. 30 and $30 for later entries.

Awards will be presented to the top two male and top two female finishers in each age group.

Visit facebook.com/RunfortheHouseMarshalltown for registration forms, or visit the House of Compassion, 211 E. Church St.

The event begins and ends at the House of Compassion, and is primarily a flat course with some small inclines.

Volunteers are needed to help.

For more information contact Walker at 641-752-5999 or andiwalker@gmail.com