The “One Step at a Time Walking Program” lasts five weeks and is organized by The Dreams of Tomorrow (DOT) and Bobby Harris, a Sicklerville native who wants to encourage the health and wellness of residents’ lifestyles. Walks take place every Saturday morning at 9 a.m.
DOT will have local organizations and companies focused on health and wellness to provide information and resources during the walks. Free refreshments such as fruits, small snacks and water will be provided. Harris hopes attendees will use the opportunity to engage in conversation with fellow residents in a peaceful environment.
“Through our weekly registration, we will be able to track how many residents participate and will be able to send weekly email reminders of programming,” he said. “The last day of the program, we will ask participants to fill out a quick survey for them to tell us what their experience was like, if this will become a new part of their wellness routine, and how we can improve.
“Following the completion of the program, we will be able to provide a brief report of our impact and reach.”
Harris and the Dreams of Tomorrow organization have been in the Sicklerville community since 2005. They offer programs for youth to engage in activities centered around charitable, educational, and community involvement. DOT aims to benefit participants with state, local, and federal resource opportunities.
“We are a volunteer-based organization. We use the word ambassador because that is how we get the word out, run our programs, and don’t do a lot of solicitation,” Harris explained.
“We focus on life skills …” added Harris, who pointed out that the organizations’ “strong point” is children, but the walking program will also be geared to older community members.
Walking and outdoor activities increased heavily during the beginning of the pandemic and their popularity has continued even though COVID restrictions have eased. Harris, DOT and the mayor’s office view them as a great opportunity to get people outside as the worst of the summer heat tapers off.
Turner-Wood Dental and Mt. Zion Pentecostal Church will sponsors the walking program. More information is available at thedotorginzation.com and the Gloucester Township Facebook page.