UMD Gives $13,000 Ajvar 5K Grant to VERA – Children with Down Syndrome and Autism

UMD looks back with pride and gratitude on the successes of 2017’s Ajvar 5K, and the meaningful difference the diaspora community has made together.

Over 600 participants took part in UMD’s flagship charitable event, Ajvar 5K with races held in Crown Point, Indiana; Chicago, Illinois; Detroit, Michigan; Columbus, Ohio; Garfield, New Jersey; Los Angeles, and San Francisco, California; and Washington, D.C. over the summer and fall of 2017.

In its fifth year, Ajvar 5K raised $13,000 for VERA, a non-profit organization based out of Strumica, Macedonia that provides support for children and adults with Down syndrome and Autism. The grant was hand-delivered on August 12, 2018 by UMD Chairman Stojan Nikolov and UMD’s Macedonia-based Director Veronika Tomova.

2017’s Ajvar 5K was our most successful year, not only in how many races we held, or the number of participants but also in the amount of money, we, together, as a community raised to benefit these beautiful children in Macedonia.

After five years of successful charitable races, we have decided to postpone 2018 and return in 2020, so in order to reflect on the past, find ways to streamline efficiency and organization, conduct research on charitable and humanitarian causes, and explore how best to harness the resources of our communities to serve these causes.

UMD extends its sincerest gratitude to all of the sponsors, donors, and participants who made 2017’s Ajvar 5K such a resounding success and contributed to bettering the lives of Macedonians with Down syndrome and Autism.

UMD looks forward to partnering with more communities and individuals in 2020.

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