It truly is amazing what a small group of people can do to make an impact on their community - and the team of volunteers from the Aisling Center in Yonkers, New York are making major waves ahead of the Yonker's Marathon this year.

The driving force behind Team Aisling’s success is a small group of local New Yorkers from the Yonkers and Bronx area started Team Aisling in January to bring both runners and non-runners together to run in this year’s Yonkers Marathon.  It was all about community, bringing people together for fitness, fundraising and friendship.  To connect people to new and old friends and to enable people to challenge themselves as they may have never been challenged before.

This amazing group of people started out far from Yonkers, New York; led by Catherine Flood from Monaghan, with her stellar committee; Breda Carroll from Cork, Caitriona Clarke from Leitrim, Tracy Dwyer from Luton England, Kelly Fincham from Louth, Elaine Heaney from Armagh, Valerie Gleeson from Mayo, Orla Kelleher from Kerry, Jenny Kenny Phipps from Offaly, Theresa McKenna from Monaghan, Mary Quinn McAleer from Dublin and Sharon Regan Masciovecchio from Bridgewater, New Jersey and they now all living in the Westchester, Bronx and Rockland New York area. They have all been connected to the Aisling Irish Community Center over the years and have benefited from its services in one way or another. 

The goal was to get a few runners together, to get some coaches on board to help with training and nutrition and to raise both awareness and funds to benefit the Aisling Irish Community Center. With the Marathon just a week away, the team is over 200 members strong, with runners participating in the Marathon, the Half Marathon and the 5K on October 21st.  The response in the community has been overwhelming to support the runners and the Aisling Center.  If you would like to make a donation online here, you can look to support an individual runner or make a general donation. 

Monies raised will help fund the Aisling Irish Community Center’s Mental Health Programs including; free and confidential counseling services with a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Life Coach with extensive mental health experience in supporting individuals, children, families, and groups.  The center provides an Irish arts and culture program including classes in Irish language, music, and dance; assistance with employment & accommodation; services for Senior Citizens; various classes for adults and children and weekly AA meetings.  Our educational, cultural and welfare programs/services benefit over 900 people each week.   The Irish Volunteers for the Homeless program is a weekly feeding program, delivering food to the homeless at numerous locations throughout New York City. Volunteers are welcome to join the group at any time. 

Aisling Irish Community Center provides resources and a community respite to the Bronx, Yonkers, Queens and the entire tristate area. Over the years, the role of the Center has evolved into a fully-fledged social services organization catering not only to the Irish and Irish-American population but also to the community at large. Aisling Center is one of the largest Irish immigrant resource centers in the tri-state area and the main provider of services for communities of Yonkers and Woodlawn. 

For more information; 914-237-5121, www.aislingcenter.org

This article was submitted to the IrishCentral contributors network by a member of the global Irish community. To become an IrishCentral contributor click here.

The Team Aisling CommitteeNuala Purcell