In recent years, there has been a big increase in the number of people who are running in general, and this has been matched by increasing numbers of runners who want to run on behalf of a charity. The Beijing Marathon offers a great opportunity to run for charity, but what exactly does this mean?
For those of you new to charity running, the whole idea revolves around a runner competing in a marathon and asking friends, family and others to 'sponsor' him or her for charity. This means that people will make a promise to give money to a charity runner if they finish the marathon. In some cases people may sponsor a runner a set amount for each mile/km of the race they complete.
This means that people agree to support the efforts of a runner who will collect all monies owed and then hand this over to the charity they have agreed to run for. In return the charity will provide the runner with support during training and on race day.
The most successful fundraising marathon in the world is the Virgin London Marathon, an event that raises more than £50 million a year for charities. In Beijing we are partnering The Realbuzz Group who manage the charity programme for the Virgin London Marathon and we aim to make the Beijing Marathon as successful as London!
We are working with a small number of charities in China and around the world in a brand new charity programme. The charities involved will have special entries in the Beijing Marathon and will be providing training and fundraising support for the runners that they select from the many who will want to run for them. They will also provide some unique extras that will make Marathon Day even more special.
Places in the Beijing Marathon do cost the charity and it is of course in their interests to maximize their revenue for each and every place they have secured. So it is unfair to commit to run for a charity if you have no real intention or realistic possibility of raising the agreed fundraising target.
Don't be put off by the amount that has to be raised. Fundraising isn't as difficult as you might think especially if you start early and get family and friends to help. The more people you get to help you with fundraising, the more you can concentrate on your training.
It's even better if the charity you are sporting really means something to you. If you run in memory of a family member, to support a friend, or because of their own personal experience, this can be the prime motivation for running and fundraising. With a charity and their cause relying on you there's less chance of you not doing the right amount of training and much more chance of you making it to the start and reaching the finish line.
Find out here which charities have our special Charity Entries
What you can expect from your chosen charity