Leadership McPherson Class of 2024 Graduates, Sets Sights on FYR

Leadership McPherson Class of 2024 Graduates, Sets Sights on FYR

Leadership McPherson has been an impactful program of the McPherson Chamber of Commerce since 1982. The class of 2024 began their journey in March with seven class sessions including two days at the Kansas Leadership Center. The community leadership program focuses on developing leadership capacity that inspires visionary, positive action, to motivate and strengthen our community. It’s about embracing the concept that leadership is an activity, not a position, and recognizing that anyone can lead, and it starts with you.

Congratulations to the Leadership McPherson Class of 2024: Kristen Becker, Melissa Clouatre, Janey Crosthwaite, Amber Dennett, Ludi Egging, Jason Green, Ammorette Gross, Joseph Hostetler, Lucas Lowry, Lisa Nightingale, Brandon O’Neill, Andrew Rush, Kylie Schmidt, Michelle Schnabel, Zeck Shiew, Jonathan Spearman, Olin Unruh, and Courtney Weesner.

In 2000, the curriculum incorporated a service project to benefit the youth of McPherson County. During its graduation ceremony May 8th, members of the Leadership McPherson Class of 2024 announced that their class project will benefit Mac-Town CrossFit’s Forging Youth Resilience (FYR) program.

The class brainstormed a number of different options and was particularly interested in supporting mentorship in some form. Then they learned about FYR, which focuses on physical and mental health in students in elementary school through high school and the mentorship relationship coaches have with the students in the program. They met with the program’s director, Meaghan Reamy, at the gym to discuss FYR’s needs and to observe the coaches and students in action.

The leadership class learned that FYR is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers young people to build physical and mental strength for life by providing free age-appropriate CrossFit workouts to kids aged 6 to 18. Mentoring is provided by volunteer coaches for all students participating in the program, and the program focuses on promoting a positive body image and good mental health. FYR’s vision is “a world where all young people feel strong, capable, and confident to become the best version of themselves.”

A couple challenges FYR faces are community awareness about the program so more students can participate and consistent funding beyond grants to fund things like age-appropriate equipment and healthy after-school snacks.

The Leadership McPherson Class of 2024’s class project seeks to address these issues. They will work with FYR’s board of directors to kick off a new annual fundraiser with the first annual FYR row-a-thon on September 21st. Participants will compete individually or in teams of 4, 6, or 8 to row a half-marathon. Funds raised will go directly to pressing initiatives at FYR.

The class’s vision is “to promote mental and physical resilience in youth that builds stronger future leaders in our community.” In support of that vision, their project goals are to

  • Assist in launching a yearly event aimed at generating funds to drive positive change for youth in our community for years to come.
  • Raise awareness of Mac-Town FYR in our community and help increase their enrollment.
  • Provide funding to help develop Mac-Town FYR projects and initiatives.

The class has grown close over the ten weeks of leadership courses led by the McPherson Chamber, with facilitators in McPherson and at the Kansas Leadership Center in Wichita. The class looks forward to continued camaraderie and teamwork as they bring this project to fruition.