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CCMI’s Captiva Tri team competing to raise awareness of hunger

By Staff | Sep 1, 2011

A special group of adult volunteers have stepped forward to represent Community Cooperative Ministries Inc. during the Galloway Captiva Tri at South Seas Island Resort on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 17 and 18.

CCMI was selected as the benefitting non-profit for the Galloway Captiva Tri, a weekend triathlon family, fun and fitness event. A portion of the proceeds raised will go toward supporting CCMI’s mission of fighting homelessness and hunger.

CCMI’s Montessori Directress Cindy Venezia along with her friends Bob Boyd and Patty Kuehner will be running, biking and swimming for the local nonprofit agency during the adult sprint on Sunday.

“I have participated in just one 5K before so I am honored that Bob and Patty jumped at the chance to compete in this event with me,” Venezia said. “They both understand how great the need in this area is for hunger relief and really wanted to participate for CCMI.”

According to Venezia, Boyd works in horticulture and Kuehner is a golf pro.

“Bob has been running, swimming and biking in races and triathlons for a number of years and only participates in those events that support a cause,” Venezia said. “Patty has been swimming since she was a kid and has competed in triathlons as well so I’ve got a great team with me.”

The weekend is comprised of two children’s triathlons on Saturday (Ages 6-9: 100-yard swim, 1.5-mile bike, .5-mile run; Ages 10-13: 200-yard swim, 3-mile bike, 1-mile run) and an adult sprint length triathlon on Sunday (440-yard swim [0.25 mile], 10-mile bike, 3.1-mile run [5K].)

“We are always looking for new ways to partner with community groups and special events to spread our mission of being innovators in the fight against hunger and homelessness,” said Sarah Owen, CEO of CCMI. “Food-insecure people are especially vulnerable due to the additional risk factors associated with limited resources, access to healthy and affordable foods and opportunities for physical activity. Being a part of an event open to all age groups is a win-win.”

“Our area has continued to have one of the worst foreclosure and unemployment rates,” said Sam Galloway Jr., owner of the Galloway Automotive and title sponsor of the event.

Galloway said he wants to ensure programs remain in place to help Southwest Florida’s growing population of hungry be able to find a nutritious meal.

“More of our neighbors are going to need our help and we can make a difference,” Galloway said. “When hunger affects our community it impacts everyone of us in some way and if everyone of us does a small part to impact change, change will happen. It only takes two dollars to feed a family for a day.”

“I just hope I can make a good showing for CCMI and my teammates,” Venezia added.

CCMI is an innovative nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization which serves Fort Myers and the greater Lee County area, including Bonita Springs, Cape Coral and Lehigh Acres. They work in partnership with United Way of Lee, Hendry and Glades, Harry Chapin Food Bank and various community foundations as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups including The School District of Lee County and numerous churches, businesses and community support organizations.

All events will take place on Captiva at South Seas Island Resort. The adult event is sold out but there are still spaces open for the children’s events. For more information or to register, visit www.captivatri.com.