Marathons and 5Ks offer opportunities to bond with community members, promote a healthy lifestyle and raise awareness of global poverty. As a result, millions of people participate in running events every year to fundraise for various causes. Since COVID-19 guidelines restrict large in-person gatherings, organizations have increasingly hosted races in which people can participate from anywhere. People can now join in from their city squares, their neighborhood parks or even their treadmills at home. As a result, greater numbers of people can contribute to the fight to end poverty.
3 Notable Running Events Addressing Global Poverty
- Run to Attack Poverty. This annual running event is hosted by a Texas-based organization with a global reach, Attack Poverty. Participants have the option to choose from running a 5K or a 10K, with a children’s race to include younger people too. In 2012, the organization opened a branch in Uganda called Friends of Uganda to help address issues of poverty in the country. Since its establishment, Friends of Uganda has helped address Uganda’s water shortage and provided healthcare services to thousands of Ugandans via “free mobile medical clinics.” Furthermore, friends of Uganda built a high school to accommodate roughly 104 students and established several micro-farms, all while creating job opportunities in the country. The Run to Attack Poverty race helps fund these efforts. The organization also sells Attack Poverty apparel to raise funds and spread awareness of the cause.
- 5K Run to End Poverty: The Acacia insurance group hosted this running event in support of Global Citizen’s fight against poverty. Acacia companies urged employees to partake in a virtual 5K to raise donations for the Global Citizen nonprofit. For every employee registered to run the 5K, Acacia donated to Global Citizen’s fight to end global poverty. Anyone at all, however, could register for a $15 donation to Global Citizen. The 5K was to be completed within 48 hours and allowed participants to run anywhere in the world, logging their runs via the atlasGO app.
- Global 6K for Water: The global nonprofit World Vision hosted this running event on May 22, 2021. The purpose of the run was to “bring life-changing clean water to those who need it most.” To gain as many participants as possible, World Vision encouraged people all around the world to participate, regardless of whether the individual chooses to “walk, jog or stroller-run.” Aside from the charitable run, for every $1 donation World Vision receives, the organization donates about 65 cents to community-based programs in almost 100 countries around the world. The remaining 35 cents goes toward impact maximization, which translates to investments in monitoring, fundraising, experts and more.
Running to Reduce Poverty
Even in a new, socially distanced landscape, both companies and nonprofits have utilized running events to raise awareness and donations to combat global poverty. Furthermore, companies and organizations like Acacia and World Vision have opened their races to more people through flexible start times and locations. As events like these continue, everyone can help support those who live in poverty, one step at a time.
– Chloe Young