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GirlTrek marches into Selma, issues challenge

GirlTrek, the largest health movement for black women in America, has started local treks around Selma.

Co-founded by college friends, the organization’s mission is to rally one million black women by 2020 to establish a life-saving habit of daily walking.

GirlTrek is currently planning a Road to Selma initiative. The initiative will end with a  Summer of Selma festival May of 2019.

Summer of Selma will retrace the steps of the historic 54-mile walk from Selma to Montgomery.

The director of communications for GirlTrek reached out to Ainka Jackson, executive director of the Selma Center for Nonviolence, Truth and Reconciliation, about starting local treks. 

Jackson, along with other female leaders in Selma met with two GirlTrek employees to discuss GirlTrek in Selma.

“The partnership was ideal as the Selma Center focuses on violence in all forms including physical violence,” Jackson said. “We are looking forward to this festival, which will bring national attention and tourism to Selma.”

Jackson and co-event organizer Krystal Dozier, along with other women throughout Selma have accepted the challenge to walk for at least 30 minutes a day for the next 100 days.

“We’re excited about walking our way to the freedom that healthiness brings and winning prizes through GirlTrek,” Jackson said.

Dozier said she is happy to walk the historic path of those before her.

“After attending the informational meeting held by representatives of GirlTrek, I felt the need to organize a circle of women to walk,” Dozier said. “As a member of the Historic Tabernacle Baptist Church, home of the first meeting for the Voting Right’s Movement, it was fitting to start here and walk to the Edmund Pettus Bridge.”

The trekkers walk Monday through Saturday, at Bloch Park at 8 a.m. and Sundays at 6:30 p.m. at Tabernacle Baptist Church.

The next trek will be Sunday, Aug. 26 at 6:30 p.m. The group will meet at Tabernacle Baptist Church and walk to the Edmund Pettus Bridge.