The Health Hero Challenge: Meet the Charities

Find out which charities our Health Hero Challenge finalists will be playing for in the final round.

In the final phase of the Health Hero Challenge (which kicks off on Tuesday!), our four finalists will be competing for a $2,500 grand prize that will go to the winner’s charity of choice. Over the past few weeks, we’ve been filming videos with each of the finalists to learn more about their stories as Health Heroes and find out why their chosen charities are so meaningful to them. We’ll reveal those videos next week on our Facebook page, then open it up to you, our readers, to help choose a winner!

Here, you can learn more about the charities, who they’re helping, and how they’re making an impact in our community.

Finalist: Heather McDanel
Director and founder, Students Run Philly Style
Charity: Students Run Philly Style

Students Run Philly Style is the only program in Philadelphia that offers marathon training to help youth succeed in life. It connects students with adult mentors who help them accomplish goals beyond their dreams, including the completion of a marathon. Since 2004, Students Run Philly Style has served over 2,500 students, ages 12 through 18, from neighborhoods across Philadelphia. Students train side-by-side with their mentors three days a week from March to November. Along the way, they complete eight road races, and engage in leadership and character development.


Finalist: Chris Marino
Owner and personal trainer, Marino’s Body Shop
Charity: Police Athletic League of Philadelphia

The Philadelphia Police Athletic League is an independent nonprofit corporation committed to its mission, “Cops Helping Kids.” Philadelphia PAL is comprised of 26 centers across Philadelphia serving thousands of youngsters both male and female. Each center is supervised by Philadelphia police officers who are assigned full-time to direct activities and oversee the young people. Programs include sport, educational and cultural opportunities. PAL is a mixture of police officers, civilian staff and a board of directors, which is made up of 100 of Philadelphia’s business and community leaders, several of which are former PAL alumni themselves.


Finalist: Beth DuPree
Breast surgeon and medical director, Holy Redeemer Health Program
Charity: The Healing Consciousness Foundation

The mission of The Healing Consciousness Foundation is to improve the quality of life for those at high risk for or diagnosed with breast cancer through holistic healing modalities, education, and lifestyle changes. It provides funding for services to empower patients, and their families, to reduce their risk factors and realize their full healing potential. Beth DuPree began the foundation in order to be able to provide her patients with the healing services so needed on their cancer journey that are not covered by traditional insurance. Holistic services are offered to breast-cancer survivors who are treated in conjunction with the Breast Health Program at Holy Redeemer Hospital and Comprehensive Breast Care Surgeons of Holy Redeemer.


Finalist: Stephen Brown
Team in Training coach, triathlete, author
Charity: Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

The mission of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is: cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services. Our key priorities ensure that the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society helps blood cancer patients live better, longer lives.