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Impossible to Possible: Running for Reconciliation

Sports, Youth

Shannon Loutitt is an honour runner.

This year she used her knowledge of honour running to combine forces with Saskatoon school kids and international runners from the Impossible to Possible Share Canada Tour.

The Share Canada tour had six youth from four countries, India, New Zealand, Singapore and France visiting and running in communities across the country to celebrate Canada 150.

The organizer Ray Zahab knows Loutitt, so reached out before the group arrived in Saskatoon in May. Loutitt worked with Zahab to turn their Share Canada Tour into a Call to Action.

“This country was built on the fabric of sharing, the first people of this country shared with the newcomers that came here,” Loutitt said.

Within two weeks, the students and staff of John Lake school had jumped on the opportunity to make a difference.

Alongside the international youth, they did an honour run for Residential School Survivors. Honour running is about going the distance for those that have endured or have gone the distance before us, Loutitt said.

“You run from your spirit, not your physical self.”

Before the run kicked off, the Impossible to Possible team was introduced and residential school survivors were honoured with grandmother dolls – a doll designed to give support to the holder. The school students had also lined the hallways of the schools with paper dolls.

“It just became this moment where we able to acknowledge and not just acknowledge but make it bigger. So that this run that was coming through, we were able to take it from something that could have been completely offensive to an opportunity where we could acknowledge and honour and make it a call to action,” Loutitt said.

While she might have been the force that brought all the parties together, Loutitt said she is overwhelmed by the response.

“Too often chances come our way and we look at them as to difficult, confusing or out of our reach then stop right there,” she said.

“These students and staff didn't. They saw and opportunity and even though they didn't know how it was going to turn out, they were willing to put everything in and try their best. That's what I call champions!”

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