I am a member of my local running club and two weeks ago we had a great meeting about running to raise money for good causes. The founder and president of Races Against Childhood Cancer spoke to us about how and why he started the organization, what they have done, and how we can help. They not only are an organization that one can raise money for when training for races, but they also put on many races and events throughout the year for which proceeds go towards childhood cancer research. The organization has an advisory board that assists them in determining which research organizations will receive the donations, but all of the donated money goes towards childhood cancer research. We heard some pretty amazing stories and I left feeling very inspired.
The concept is quite simple. If you are doing a race (or any event that could be turned into a fundraiser…even a birthday party), you can create an account here and can raise money by directing people to your account. You can set your own goal, but they urge you to try to raise at least $1000. They will send you some racing gear so when you are out there running/walking anything from a 5K to an ultra marathon you are showing the world who you are running for.
I am drawn to the concept of raising money for such a worthy cause, because I am a competitive person by nature and this competitiveness often gets in the way of enjoying my runs. If the purpose of my run shifts from getting my next PR to running for a cause, I think I will be more able to focus on simply finishing the run and enjoying the moment.
This is clearly not for everyone, but if you feel the slightest pull to learn more, I strongly urge you to do so. The founder (Cole Braun) was very passionate about the organization and I’m sure he or his other staff would love to talk with you more about how you can help. The contact information can be found here.