Nena Suarez, mother of two KIPPsters, volunteers with soccer concessions and school events, but her favorite way to give back to KIPP is through her family’s participation in the No Shortcuts 5K. She understands the importance of being involved in her children’s educations.
“For my family, we love to be outgoing and participate,” Nena said. “When I heard about the run, I knew participating would show that commitment, not taking any shortcuts. It’s the same commitment I want my children to have in their education. They love for me to be involved, committing to my children and to the school shows we are a part of one Team & Family.”
It’s a Family Affair
Nena’s two children, Alejandra and Christopher Manzanares, run every year. Christopher is a Kindergartner at KIPP Explore and voted on Mr. Cush’s outfit for the first time this year. His big sister, Alejandra is a 5th grader at KIPP Intrepid next door and remembers Mr. Cush’s costumes fondly. They won’t learn whether Mr. Cush will be a ballerina, centaur, or something else equally crazy.
During the first run, Alejandra was determined to beat Mr. Cush and was able to stay next to him the entire race.
“Seeing the teachers there makes my kids strive to be great,” Nena said.
Committed to her school, Alejandra is always looking for ways to give back to KIPP. At the end of her fourth grade year, her grandfather gave her $100 to use however she wanted. Alejandra chose to donate the entire amount to Pasta for Pennies.
“I want her to see it’s important to be committed to the choice we made to come to KIPP,” Nena said. “That’s why we do the things we do.”