"I wanted to be like the girl on Spy Kids, either that or like a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle," Grace Stiles says.
Superheroes are what originally sparked Stiles' interest in martial arts. More than ten years later, she's a black belt and captain of her karate Powerline Performance Team. It's a group she believes to also have super human powers.
"We walk down normal streets, we walk in normal clothes but no one knows we're martial artists until something happens," she said.
Stiles and her team are using their powers for good. They're performing a martial arts routine at the Douglas Community Services- CASA Superhero 5K (get a sneak peek at the performance by clicking here).
"When we got together this season we all decided we wanted to give back to the community more this year and so we signed up for more volunteer work," Stiles said. "We decided this was a great cause to help support."
CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates. These volunteers are appointed to children that have been removed for their homes and placed in foster care. They're expected to keep the child's best interest in mind during the court process.
"Our volunteer advocates are being the superheroes for these kids," CASA Program Development Director Samantha Gilland said. "It does have a positive story, a lot of the CASA kids that go through the system and have a CASA advocate for them are more successful in school. Statistics show that it does help and they have a better life because of it."
"These kids are going through a lot and we wanted to be there to support them and let them know they can be a hero too," Stiles's karate coach from Black Belt Karate Association Cindy Powell said.
You can channel your alter ego by putting on a costume and running in the Superhero 5k. All the proceeds from the run go directly to CASA to help train the advocates.
It's cause Stiles is happy to support with her karate powers.
"You don't want to be the villain you always want to be a superhero," she said.