When Nevada PEP Community Development Director Stephanie Vrsnik puts her name on a banner event, she goes all-in. That was was evidenced Oct. 19 at the ninth annual Nevada PEP Run Walk Roll Against Bullying on the grounds of Donald Moyer Building at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Nevada PEP is a nonprofit organization that provides information and individual services and training to Nevada families and service providers of children with disabilities, including those who are at-risk or have serious emotional disturbances.
The fundraiser was attended by 1,000 students with 13 Findlay Automotive Group dealerships including Findlay Cadillac, the presenting sponsor of the event. A total of 34 schools participated.
With gates opening at 6:30 a.m. for set-up, the latest event presented by Nevada PEP required another dedicated effort that didn’t conclude until the final items had been picked up on Monday afternoon.
The event attracted a huge crowd and brought attention to bullying, which creates internal scars for many young people. Nevada PEP offers help to individuals and families who have to deal with bullying because of a disability that a child has.
“This has really worked out well,” Vrsnik said. “From day one, this program has attracted children and community leaders in an effort to bring attention to a deep-reaching element of society.”
The return of the fundraiser to UNLV was thought to be a factor in the success. Throughout the year, Vrsnik has been telling everyone who would listen that the bullying is happening and needs to be addressed.
The drive included back-to-school fairs throughout the valley and the state.
Nevada PEP supports family leadership in policymaking decisions at the local and state level to guide development of meaningful services that are family-driven.
The group believes that the community benefits when individuals with disabilities live, learn and participate fully in their own community.
Findlay Automotive Group CFO Tyler Corder said the company continues to support the Nevada PEP cause.
“Findlay Automotive has been sponsoring the Run Walk Roll event for six years,” Corder said. “It started with a simple request for us to sponsor one school, Pete Findlay Middle School. Our support has grown to the point where this year we’re sponsoring 13 schools and we’re also the presenting sponsor of the event.
“We’re really appreciative of the work being done by Nevada PEP. It’s an important mission, and their support of anti-bullying efforts is something that is very important in our schools today.’’
More information can be found by calling 702-388-8899, by logging onto nvpep.org or by visiting 7211 W. Charleston Blvd.
About the dealer
Founded by the late Pete Findlay, Findlay Automotive Group now includes 32 dealerships in Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Utah, Oregon and California.