HUNTERSVILLE – Hundreds of athletes, volunteers and spectators will gather April 26 at Jetton Park in Cornelius for the Kicks for Kids 5K run to benefit Brookstone School in Charlotte.

SouthLake Christian Academy students Emily Wakeman and Ansley Rikard started the nonprofit to promote health and fitness by supplying underprivileged youth with athletic equipment.

Last year, they raised more than $8,000 and bought athletic shoes and equipment for at least 100 students at Brookstone School in Charlotte.

Ansley and Emily are working to supply Brookstone School with more athletic equipment for PE classes.

Brookstone School is a nonprofit K-7 school founded in 2001 that serves low-income children and families. Located in West Charlotte, Brookstone draws its population from the surrounding area and other economically challenged neighborhoods around Charlotte. The school emphasizes the attributes for a successful life: character, responsibility, service, self-reliance and faith.

“Emily and I are excited once again to volunteer and work with the students at Brookstone because we have a desire to make an impact on their lives,” Ansley said.

Emily and Ansley have been involved in soccer, cheerleading, running and swimming. They would like to promote active lifestyles to other youth in the community.

In addition, they both give their time to other community groups. Emily has been active in the Foundation for Carolinas with the Teen Impact Fund, The Teen Health Connection in Charlotte and the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte. Ansley has also been involved with Student Missions Fellowship and missions within her church.

Krispy Kreme has signed on as a sponsor and will provide doughnuts after the race to participants.

The event will also include music and drinks. There will be awards to participants as well as door prizes.

Emily said the event will attract families, athletes who are avid racers and all ages of people who what to support the cause.

“Ansley and I created this charity and event because we are both young athletes and know how valuable health and fitness is for the youth and the community,” Emily said. “This race builds community spirit and promotes health and fitness for all ages. Our mission has been able to grow due to the support of the community.”


Want to go? The Kicks for Kids 5K takes place April 26 at Jetton Park in Cornelius to benefit Brookstone School in Charlotte. To register and donate for the event visit: