The Shuie Family - Running for a Cause
It’s not every day that someone runs a 5K. Much less, it’s not every day that you see a whole family running and training for a cause. However unique, the Shuie family is doing just that.
Running for a cause is not something the Shuie’s were planning on doing, it just kind of happened. I was able to connect with Glenna Shuie, wife to Peter Shuie and mother to Taylor (13) and Christian (11). Glenna is planning on running a half marathon and was looking to run in a 5K to help reach her goal and also to find a motivation to train. After searching online, she found out about Dressember and the 5K we are hosting this month! In Glenna’s own words, “After doing a little research, I found that the Dressember story and mission very much appealed to me. Sadly, I am well aware of human trafficking, especially here in California.”
“After doing a little research, I found that the Dressember story and mission very much appealed to me. Sadly, I am well aware of human trafficking, especially here in California.”
That was the moment that Glenna got involved, but what about the rest of the family? Glenna says,
[Peter and I] have had ongoing conversations [with our children] about activism. (To be honest, this sounds way more impressive and conscientious than we actually are. Let's just say that these conversations were...aspirational!). When I mentioned Dressember and human trafficking, I was surprised to find out that both kids were already aware of this horrible crisis. We had found our cause!
Once the Shuie family found their cause and motivation for running, they jumped right in! You Can Do Anything in a Dress (or Tie) 5k is more than just a run. It's also a fundraiser. And the Shuie’s have tackled both fundraising and training successfully! When I asked Glenna about their strategy for fundraising, she answered simply, “Just ask. Not everyone will give - but not everyone has to. We are raising awareness regardless. That said, we were surprised by the generosity of our friends and family.” As far as a plan to make sure that training gets in, the whole family has been running four times a week since mid-March to make sure they are ready and in shape for May 20th. Both Peter and Taylor were already runners before the 5K, but now Glenna and Christian have joined in too!
"Just ask. Not everyone will give - but not everyone has to. We are raising awareness regardless. That said, we were surprised by the generosity of our friends and family.”
Given that this is a whole family event for the Shuie’s, I was able to ask Glenna what it looks like to model advocacy for their kids, and what her greatest desires are for them as they participate in the Dressember 5K. Glenna answered that she and Peter, “try to show them that we can be involved in different ways - of course there is donating money and time, but sometimes just being an advocate and talking about issues to bring awareness is equally impactful.” Glenna said that Taylor and Christian have done most of the fundraising for the family, and that they are so proud of the money they have raised. They are not only proud of the fundraising, but also excited about how much they have learned about human-trafficking - knowledge that they have then started to share with others. Glenna commented, “I want them to feel empowered, and to exercise that power to influence (for good, of course!). This is hopefully not one and done!”
"I want them to feel empowered, and to exercise that power to influence (for good, of course!). This is hopefully not one and done!”
When you come out to participate in our 5K on May 20th, make sure you look for the Shuie family! Peter and Christian will be wearing ties, and Glenna and Taylor will have on both ties and dresses! The family’s best advice for inspiring others to get involved? “It doesn't have to be a big thing. It doesn't have to be a the ‘it’ thing. It doesn't have to be a perfect thing. Any ‘thing’ will do.” To sum up their advice, simply just take a step and get involved in whatever way you can.
Everyone at Dressember hopes that you will get involved by joining us, and the Shuie family at our You Can Do Anything in a Dress (or Tie) 5K, whether in person or remotely! You can sign up to participate in the run or donate to your favorite teams like the Shuie family or our Dressember Intern Team! We look forward to advocating with you!
You don't have to wait until December to be a part of the impact. Join the Dressember Collective and become part of a powerful community of advocates and donors furthering the work and impact of the Dressember Foundation through monthly giving.
About the Author
Amanda Kinney just graduated from The Master’s University and calls Southern California home. She enjoys long walks, rain, photography, and all things peppermint. On a daily basis, she can be found eating vegan food and talking with her peers about ethical issues. She is enthusiastic about being on the Dressember team and plans on being a life-long advocate against slavery.