You gotta love a good "cause," am I right?
Such is the case with partaking in an event (ahem, like a race) and fundraising for their charity partner(s) or the event itself.
Hence my 10-year relationship with the Fight for Air Climb, my favorite cause.
But, first things first, what's a good cause?
"If you say that something is , you mean that it is worth doing or giving to because it will help other people, for example by raising money for charity." (Collins Dictionary)
...and what would be the "effect," of said cause? Simply put, the benefactors are those whom the charity or organization serves.
With Marathon Monday fresh in our memories, many of us were captivated by all the glamour and glitz (and grit) of the Boston Marathon. I read there were 25,314 registered participants for this year's race (source). I couldn't find final numbers on how many of those participants were charity runners, but I did see there were 2,106 such participants (source) for the 2021 event. Charitable donations exceeded over $26 million for the 2021 marathon (which actually took place in October, of last year, instead of on the usual Patriots Day). WOW!
What is so significant about these charity runners? Not only are they running the iconic Boston Marathon for the glory of the accomplishment, they're also running for the benefit of others. Many of these runners aren't able to qualify (running a qualifying--or faster--time, via a recent marathon), but they're able to secure a Boston bib for themselves by taking part in the Boston Marathon Charity Program (more info HERE). This year, there were 42 participating charities. Potential participants have to apply to be on a team, and there's a minimum requirement of $5,000 in fundraising donations.
Not to take anything away from the runners who have earned their BQ, but I wish the charity runners would get a little more press time and recognition for their efforts. Training for 26.2 miles is a daunting task (I know this for a fact, since I've run nine of them myself). Adding in the additional commitment of fundraising ups the #badass component (IMO).
While I have done well over 100 races and fitness-themed events (I don't know an exact count, LOL), the Fight for Air Climb is the one where I've invested the most time and energy with fundraising. I did my first Climb in 2013 (recap) and have returned every year since (with the exception of 2019, when I was in DC for the CUCB Cherry Blossom 10-miler). This event has a $100 (minimum) fundraising commitment, which is pretty attainable. I don't know my cumulative totals, but I have exceeded the $100 minimum each year without feeling like it was a burden. Besides, it feels good knowing others are benefiting while I sweat-it-out on the stairs.
The 2022 Climb takes place on May 7th, and I'm looking forward to it! I've passed the $100 minimum with fundraising, but why stop there? If you're interested in supporting the cause, my fundraising page is HERE. The Climb is affiliated with the American Lung Association, so all funds raised go towards research and support of those afflicted with lung disease.
Have you ever done fundraising in association with a race or fitness-inspired event? Have you heard of the Boston Marathon Charity Program? Would you consider being a charity runner to secure a bib for Boston?