New 5K to support literacy project

MORVEN — The HOLLA! Center of Morven, NC will stage a 5K walk/run, as well as provide the kick-off location for the literacy project, “Florita Bell Griffin’s Little Flower” International Cultural Art Project” of Houston, Texas. The event is scheduled for Saturday, May 9.
The theme of the 5K race, “Run into the Freedom of Literacy,” encapsulates the mission of both HOLLA! and the Little Flower project.
Dr. Florita Bell Griffin

Dr. Florita Bell Griffin

According to HOLLA  founder Leon Gatewood, “the inclusion of Dr. Florita Bell Griffin, and the Little Flower series, is an aligning of the stars.” He adds, “the message of ‘Little Flower’ and its emphasis on literacy is completely aligned with the mission of HOLLA! We feel fortunate to provide the venue for this historic and symbolic launch.”

The non-profit organization HOLLA! and the HOLLA! Center provide a variety of services and programs that aid in increasing the test scores for children so that they are better equipped to make positive contributions to the community and society.
The inspiration for “Little Flower” which also means “Florita” in Spanish, came from Dr. Griffin’s  husband, Dr. Richard W. Griffin, who insisted that his wife’s professional training, passion for children and her own life experiences uniquely qualified her to launch the ground-breaking initiative. “Little Flower” formally entered the development phase in 2013, following more than two decades of planning.  With a mission to improve communications skills, through the use of the arts, the “Little Flower” project specifically addresses bullying and discrimination, as well as methods to minimize their negative impact on children.  Using storytelling and artistic media, the project is designed to stimulate academic performance, foster self-esteem, create vision, and promote diversity in middle school students.
During the May 9 kick-off event, Griffin will display various components of the Little Flower project that includes the collaborative work of over thirty-five creative and business professionals from nine states and seven countries.
The “Little Flower” Storybook and and Educational Series component is loosely based on the life of the author. The series is dedicated to the memory of her deceased parents, the Rev. Asa L. Bell and Mrs. M.R. Bell.
Gatewood said 100 percent of profits generated from all Little Flower products sold at the 5K walk/run will be donated to the M. R. Bell Scholarship Fund at HOLLA! and to HOLLA!
HOLLA! founder Gatewood, and author Griffin grew up literally across the street from each other in Wadesboro. The 5K race is a reunion of sorts for community members who are registering for the event from throughout the region and some who will play a variety of pivotal roles in the event.
The HOLLA! 5K will begin at 8 a.m. with a literacy rally at the Morven Community Park featuring live music by Gospel Rap Artist LOE4God, the sensational eight year old drummer, Maxwell Manigan and a vigorous warm-up routine by Creeta’s Fitness Team.
You can also register for the event online at  Free t-shirts will be provided for the first 200 people to pre-register.
For more information on The Little Flower Project visit
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