Driven to Make a Difference - Race for Arielle Raises Funds for Bulimia Care

by Stu Slayen | Dec 23, 2019
It was a stunning July day at Gimli Motorsports Park when Marve Kraut got behind the wheel of his family’s Corvette and whipped around the track at speeds of 100 miles per hour. He drove for fun. He drove for the exhilaration. But above all, he drove in memory of his daughter, Arielle, who died of bulimia this past January at the age of 29.

“Arielle started showing signs of bulimia at the age of 16 and lived with the disease for 13 years,” says Kraut of the debilitating eating disorder. “There weren’t adequate supports for her in Winnipeg.”

After Arielle passed away, Marve and Harriet Kraut and their entire family decided that they wanted to do something special in her honour. Kraut’s younger brother, Myles, stepped forward with the idea of hosting the “Race for Arielle”.

“We’ve always been a car family and Myles usually books the track a few times a year,” explains Kraut. “He made one of his dates available and we got to work getting people to sign up and donate to the fund we set up at the Jewish Foundation.”

Jessica Kraut, Myles’s wife, organized the event, while the Kraut brothers rallied their friends. Marve Kraut, owner of an automotive business—Canadian Super Shop—reached out to his customers, too.

“In the end we had about 60 drivers and 100 guests,” says Kraut. “We’ve raised over $25,000 so far. The income the fund earns will help provide services for people battling eating disorders.”

While Kraut is pleased with the effort to raise funds, it is similarly important for him to raise awareness of eating disorders and to enrich the discussion about making more services available. At the time Arielle was diagnosed, appropriate services were scarce and she ended up in a program that wasn’t a good fit for her.

She moved back and forth between Toronto and Winnipeg, trying to get her life and health in order. She ultimately moved back to Winnipeg two weeks before she passed away.

“Arielle was kind, smart, and very artistic, but her eating disorder made her life very hard,” says Kraut. “It’s my hope that what we’re doing will make people more aware of the impact of eating disorders. Even if what we’re doing helps one young woman or man, the effort will have been worth it. It would be a fitting legacy for our daughter.”

To contribute to the Arielle Kraut Endowment Fund, please call the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba office at 204.477.7520 or toll-free from Canada and the U.S., 1.855.284.1918