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The inspiration behind Northern California's largest after school program

Before the coronavirus hit, Runnin' for Rhett helped kids move. Now, they're making sure they reach out virtually to keep them motivated.
Credit: Runnin' For Rhett

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Everyday Heroes are all around us and ABC10 wants to highlight the work they do. Every week our viewers nominate people and organizations making a difference in our community.

This week, ABC10 wants to introduce you to Randy and Beth Seevers, who started Northern California's largest after-school fitness program, Runnin' for Rhett, after the untimely death of their son in 2004. 

“He was seven years old when he died and my wife Beth used running to get through the grief of his death,” Randy Seevers said.

Rhett died due to complications of cerebral palsy. In honor of their son, Randy and Beth Seevers started Runnin' for Rhett, a non-profit that aims to inspire healthy living for kids. 

“We always tell them a little bit about Rhett and how Rhett couldn’t walk and we want them to be Rhett’s legs and get out and move for Rhett,” Randy Seevers said.

Runnin’ for Rhett works as an after school running program, serving 75 schools in the Greater Sacramento area. The program is mainly funded by grants and adult runners who pay a monthly $15 gym fee to run with coaches.

A team of coaches train upwards of 3,500 kids for a 5k run and every year, 1,000 of the neediest children receive a pair of running shoes to get started. 

“Many of these kids never had a pair of running shoes,” Randy Seevers said.

The coronavirus pandemic has created some challenges for the non-profit. Now, much of the training is done virtually, but Randy Seevers said the program is important now more than ever. 

“We think it’s important to continue to move, continue to maintain our mental wellness really,” Randy Seevers said.

Nextdoor neighbor Barbara D. of South Land Park let ABC10’s Alanea Cremen know about this story on the ABC10 Nextdoor page.Thank you to neighbors on Nextdoor for letting us know about neighbors spreading kindness. If you have a story let Alanea Cremen know on the Nextdoor page or email her directly at acremen@abc10.com