Charity events – It's not always about the competition, run for a good cause.
Running for a charity can take different forms. It can mean participating in a charity run or running for a charity within a large commercial event. It can also be your own project where you embark on raising funds for a cause that is important to you.
Charity run is a fundraising event which primary purpose is to raise money for a cause. This type of event is a great opportunity to gather hundreds or thousands of runners to help non-profit organizations fight for a cause that is somehow important for those runners.
Examples of such events are pink runs against cancer, events against poverty or runs raising awareness of human trafficking problem.
Large, commercial events like the London Marathon or New York City Marathon can also have one or several charity partners. It allows runners to select the cause they want to support. Because those events have ballot based registrations, meaning that to get into the race one has to take part in a lottery, running for a charity is a guaranteed way of entering the race without having to depend on luck. This is because to support those non-governmental organisations the organisers grant them a limited number of tickets for free. They can then distribute those amongst the supporters. After selecting a charity for which you want to fundraise you will be given a fundraising goal - an amount of donated money you have to raise. After securing a sufficient amount of donations your race entry will be guaranteed. Before you decide to enter a race this way it is a good idea to evaluate your fundraising skills and the size of your social network since you may be required to raise several thousands of pounds or dollars.
You have a race in mind but it is not a charity event and it does not offer charity entries? Or maybe you do not want to take part in a race, but rather your own running project, like running across Europe? You can still run it for a charity. There are plenty of crowdfunding platforms that let you fundraise for any cause. Sometimes the charity you want to support is already present on the crowdfunding platform. It is just a matter of creating your project and promoting it. Followers of the project will happily support your effort.
Running for a charity can be one of the most rewarding experiences you can have. You have the chance to support others who are less fortunate than you by doing what you love - running! Furthermore, if your fundraising campaign goes viral or draws attention of media or a large group of people, your impact will be immeasurable.
Charity runs are becoming even more popular over the recent years and, according to USA Track & Field CEO, Craig Masback, there is a lot to celebrate. Masback believes that charity runs bring more people into running, raise the media attention and make philanthropic giving possible for a wider part of society. It allows runners to link their sport with a specific cause that is close to their hearts.
Important events such as marathons usually have thousands of spectators as well as the potential television coverage which is a great opportunity for charities organizations to bring public consciousness and raise awareness of their purpose.
Running for a cause not only gives you an extra motivation to cross the finish line, but it is also a fun way to invest in your health and well-being. It could be an amazing experience to join thousands of runners, taking the paved roads or beautiful trails, breaking out of your routine, getting more active, fitter and healthier. Not only your body will lose a few pounds, but the training process will boost your immune system, relieve stress and feed you with an extra dose of endorphins. Besides the sense of achievement and satisfaction, there is a purpose for completing the race.
Dr. Vic Strecher, a world-renowned behavioral scientist at the University of Michigan says that ego-driven goals create pressure, tension and anxiety about performance, whereas greater and non-individualist purposes inherently move us beyond our ego, directing our attention to something bigger like a charity event.
Running for a cause can help put things in another perspective. Experiencing the hard training is something very small compared to the challenges faced by those who are struggling with real life dramas. This can help you find motivation for your training and also the problems you encounter in your life daily.
Running for charity is a great way to be part of something truly worthwhile. Whether it is a 5K, 10K, a marathon or even an ultramarathon - it will give you inspiration to participate in the race as well as the chance to raise funds for your chosen non-profit organisation. Find your next event and become a charity runner!