WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – It was the Gandara Center’s 9th annual Frozen Yogurt 5K race Sunday and more than 100 people piled into Stanley Park and laced up their shoes.

Nina Nedrebo and her daughter told 22News they were ready to get active for a good cause.

“I really believe in mental health, there should be awareness for all of us as parents as educators as the general population so it really spoke to me,” said Nedrebo.

The Frozen Yogurt 5K is part of an effort to raise awareness of mental health and substance use in diverse communities. The Gandara Center serves culturally diverse populations through culturally competent behavioral health, prevention and educational services.

And the money raised will support the programs and services at the Gandara Center. Through the 5K event last year, organizers say the center raised more than $66,000 to support their programs for nearly 15,000 children and adults across 100 locations in the state.

“It’s our desire to let the community know that we are there for them and the people who live here,” said Lois Nesci, Chief Executive Officer at Gandara Center. “We are anchored in so many communities across the Commonwealth… people know who we are, they know where we are, and we really meet people where they are at.”

And since it’s was a Frozen Yogurt 5K, everyone received a coupon to get free frozen yogurt after the race.

Local News

Kiara Smith is a reporter who has been a part of the 22News team since March 2023. Follow Kiara on X @KiaraBSmith1 and view her bio to see more of her work.