Today's Paper Search Latest Core values App Traffic map In the news #Gazette200 Listen Digital FAQ Weather Newsletters Obits Puzzles/Games Archive
story.lead_photo.caption Rhonda Wotowis Executive Director Kendrick Fincher Hydration for Life

Tell us about your organization:

• Mission: Promote proper hydration and prevent heat illness through education and supporting activities.

Beat the Heat Summer Swing Golf Tournament

When: July 15

Where: Springdale Country Club

Beat the Heat Coaches Luncheon in Partnership with Mercy Coaches Clinic

When: July 25

Where: John Q Hammons Center in Rogers

Heat Fest in partnership with Lowell Advertising and Promotions

When: Aug. 1

Where: The Grove Comedy Club in Lowell

Cool Summer Homecoming Gala

When: Aug. 17

Where: Fayetteville Town Center

Information: (479) 986-9960 or

• Services provided: Be Smart. BeeHydrated! presentations to school-aged children on the importance of proper hydration; Beat the Heat presentations to athletes, coaches and parents on proper hydration and heat illness prevention; distribution of squeeze bottles and educational pamphlets to support the educational presentations; representation at health fairs to educate the public about our mission and activities; community involvement in support of our mission by providing "cool huts" -- misting tents with free ice water -- at various outdoor public events; annual youth run in Rogers to reinforce our mission and help children and the community learn about the importance of proper hydration and physical fitness in a fun environment; partnerships with other sports injury prevention and wellness organizations; web presence that allows for regional and national reach; hydration education programs for all ages including senior adults; and industrial work force education programs for heat illness prevention.

• Service area: Northwest Arkansas through local funding; additional areas as requested and sponsored.

• Average number of people served annually: Direct education in Northwest Arkansas to more than 10,000 individuals; indirectly we reach thousands more through our website and partnerships with other organizations.

How is your organization's mission unique? We are the only organization in the country that has proper hydration and heat illness prevention as its focus and mission. After 24 years of educating, we are excited that more and more individuals and organizations are talking about proper hydration and how it can improve health in individuals of all ages.

Why do you work for a nonprofit organization? Do you have a personal connection to the mission? If so, what is it? After moving to Northwest Arkansas in 1995, my son Kendrick experienced heat stroke on his first day of football practice. He died 18 days later from multi-system organ failure. We learned the devastating effects of heat stroke and that there was very little education provided to parents, coaches and athletes.

What part of your job fills the most of your time? Education and fundraising activities.

What have you learned on the job that you didn't expect? That it would take so long and that it would be so much work to get a start-up organization to the point we are today.What challenges face your organization?

A nonprofit can achieve great things with adequate funding! Our biggest challenge is ongoing funding to support our programming and support materials, and hiring the staff to keep the mission moving forward. Are there volunteer opportunities in your organization? Yes! We have many volunteer opportunities throughout the year in the office as well as for events and educational outreach programs. We have a great opportunity for leadership on our event committees for individuals that would like to be involved on an ongoing basis. Email me at and we will discuss your interests and help you get plugged in where you would like!

What upcoming fundraisers and/or other events does your organization have planned?

-- Beat the Heat Summer Swing Golf Tournament, July 15, Springdale Country Club

-- Beat the Heat Coaches Luncheon in Partnership with Mercy Coaches Clinic, July 25, John Q Hammons Center in Rogers; and

-- Heat Fest in partnership with Lowell Advertising and Promotions: Children's activities in the morning, followed by lunch and corporate games, comedy show in the evening, Aug. 1, The Grove Comedy Club in Lowell;

-- A Cool Summer Homecoming Gala, Aug. 17, Fayetteville Town Center

Anything else you would like to add? Yes, stay safe in the summer heat! Remember to prehydrate before activity, hydrate during activity, and rehydrate after! For more information on proper hydration and staying safe in the heat, visit our website at To schedule educational programs, contact our office at (479) 986-9960.

NAN Profiles on 06/16/2019

Print Headline: Personified


Sponsor Content