ROCHESTER, Minn. (FOX47) — Marc Zoghby is a junior at Mayo High School, and on Sunday, he gave back to his home country of Lebanon by hosting a 5K in Soldiers Memorial Field Park.
“A 5K is just a wonderful way to bring a lot of people together. We have the idea that you’re running for Lebanon, you’re running to help Lebanon,” said Zoghby, the organizer of the 5K.
Zoghby received much help from his friends, family and the community.
“It has been a really well thought out event. You know, they’ve done so many meetings. We have not intervened at all. I had no idea that this was to that extent, and I think the turnout was great,” said Odette Elhelou, Marc’s mother.
“It sounded like a great opportunity for me because I am really in support of getting our community together, especially after a pandemic like we just had,” said Cooper Gamble, Marc’s friend and classmate.
In total, the 5K raised $5,269, all of which went to the Lebanese Red Cross.
“That’s just a non-profit organization that provides a lot of medical necessities for the people of Lebanon,” said Zoghby.
“They did a lot after the explosion to provide life rescue missions and stuff like that,” added Gamble.
Gamble, among others, referenced the Beirut explosion. that happened on August 4, 2020. However, that was far from the only conflict that caused major problems in Lebanon.
According to Zoghby’s mother, more than 70 percent of the Lebanese population is impoverished.
“Lebanon has been under a lot of hardship lately, especially because of the lack of fuel, electric power, medicine, medication, basic needs. And it has been worse with the current pandemic,” said Elhelou.
The hope is that any amount can help overseas.
“Over the last month, we’ve received so many donations, and a lot of people came out here to support us today. I believe we got an upwards of 60 runners today, which was really, really powerful,” said Zoghby.