Angela Cotto of Greenfield seems to have a knack for bringing folks together for a good cause.
A year ago, Cotto, who has two children in Maple Grove Elementary School and served on the Students, Teachers & Parents Committee for eight years, organized a fundraiser to help purchase new playground equipment for Maple Grove.
She was able to raise more than $700 for the school by hosting a potluck barbecue at the Advanced Pain Management Greenfield location as part of APM’s community service challenge.
This year, that fundraising experience landed Cotto, a patient care coordinator at APM, on a planning committee team of about six individuals who have worked together to organize the Advanced Pain Management’s first-ever Pain Awareness Run/Walk.
The run/walk is slated for 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, at Greenfield Park Golf Course in West Allis. Approximately 175 runners and walkers have registered for the race.
“This is much bigger scale,” compared to the playground equipment fundraiser, Cotto said. “Everything is new to us. Trying to find the volunteers to come and help out the day of, setting up the food for the picnic afterward, making sure the website was up and running, sending out registration forms.”
Cotto and her team helped coordinate volunteers, recruit sponsors and lock down the venue. It is the first time Milwaukee County Parks will have a run/walk at one of its golf courses and the course will be closed to golfers until 10:30 a.m. the day of the walk.
Cotto tapped her Greenfield resources and connections to help line up many of the approximately 35 race-day volunteers. Students from Greenfield Middle School as well as Greenfield members of the National Junior Honor Society, of which her daughter is a member will be on hand, as will some of their parents.
In addition, a group of student volunteers from Cardinal Stritch University will help.
Proceeds will benefit the American Pain Foundation to educate, support and advocate for people affected by pain.
“With over 75 million Americans suffering from pain each year, we thought it was important to give those individuals a voice,” said Yogendra Bharat, chief medical officer of Advanced Pain Management. “The Pain Awareness Run is our way to help spread awareness in the local community about the prevalence of pain and raise money to help support those who suffer from it.”
Interested runners can still register online or from 7 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. Saturday. The walk/race is intended to be family friend. Parents are encouraged to bring their children and push strollers on the course. Wheelchairs are also welcomed.
Following the race will be a post-race picnic.
“We’re honored to be able to host the APM race at Greenfield Park and Golf Course,” said Milwaukee County Parks Director Sue Black. “I think the runners will enjoy the hills and scene of the course, and it’s a fun, interactive way to raise awareness about pain.”