THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) - A South Georgia state champion gymnast is on the fast track toward realizing her dreams.
Thomas County Central junior Sterlyn Austin was invited to train at an elite gym in Athens this coming school year.
Austin has always had a passion for gymnastics.
"I remember when she was three and four years old, she used to go through the stores doing cartwheels and rolls and everything she could possibly do," said Monica Austin, Sterlyn's mother.
Now she's a junior in high school. She is preparing herself for a longtime dream, to train at the Georgia Elite Gymnastics Center in Athens.
"I'm just nervous because up there at an elite its like a different atmosphere," said Sterlyn Austin.
She wants to train with coaches who have worked with Olympic level gymnasts, although the tuition can be very expensive.
The community in Thomasville has shown her an overwhelming amount of support.
Local Business, Banks, and even Greek Organizations all donated money to support Austin. So far a total of $12,000 has been raised.
"It just makes me very proud to be apart of something so great and to know that we have our community behind us," said Monica
If she raises enough money, Sterlyn and her family will be headed to Athens at the end of July.
"I just cant tell you how excited I am for her," said Monica
Sterlyn's family is hosting a fundraiser Friday night. Tickets can be purchased at the door.
The benefit dinner will be held at Receptions for You, 1200 West Jackson Street in Thomasville, Georgia, on Friday, June 24, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.
Sponsorship options begin at $100.00. As a sponsor, your name, business/organization will be announced during the event and printed in the program.