Meet Yeurosalem!

When she grows up, Yeurosalem is going to be the best runner in the world – oh, and a surgeon, too.

Athletic scholar Yeurosalem.

Athletic scholar Yeurosalem.

And her parents are her biggest cheerleaders. Yeurosalem’s mom and dad are committed to getting their daughter a good education. Two years ago, when times were tough, Yeuroalem’s mom, Aynalew, spoke to the principal to see if there was any help the family could receive.

“I need her to have a higher education. Even now, she has more knowledge than me," Aynalew said.

Aynalew said she would do anything she could to keep her daughter in school, even cut back on her own meals to save money.

Luckily, she didn't have to.

That’s when Yeurosalem joined Girls Gotta Run.

Aynalew is so proud of the work that her daughter is doing with school and sport.

She doesn’t want to influence her daughter’s future career choice – she’s behind Yeurosalem no matter what.

Yeurosalem at school with her mom, Aynalew

Yeurosalem at school with her mom, Aynalew

And Girls Gotta Run has offered confidence and a sense of empowerment.

“This program means big impact in my life,” Yeurosalem told us.

Watching her friends in Girls Gotta Run helped demonstrate to Yeurosalem the power of a group of strong and ambitious young people.

“They can solve problems together – not because we are females together, but because we have the potential,” she said.

Yeurosalem loves math and English. But she’s also an avid athlete. And growing up with three sisters and two brothers, she had lots of siblings with whom to play soccer.

All that activity takes fuel. Before Girls Gotta Run, it was tough for Yeurosalem’s family to scrape together a lunch to send with her to school.

They worried she might get sick and be forced to miss class.

Now, she has three meals a day – and even a snack after practice. 

Aynalew hopes her daughter will pay it forward.

“I raised them with a lot of suffering. I wish they will have a better life and that they will help others, because they have received help.”