Friday, April 4, 2014

Meet the Charity Miles All-Star Relay Team!

One of my favorite things about my friends is that they are not just like me. And they're not just like each other. The way we dress, favorite beverages (caffeine, beer, vino?), what we read, how we communicate...all of those differences make up a beautiful tapestry of friendship that keeps life interesting. However, three of my friends - as different as can be - are coming together this weekend to become the "Charity Miles All Star Relay Marathon Team" and share some very important similarities.

What we four have in common is that we are all moms, long-distance runners, and people who care deeply about making the world a better place for future generations. So, it makes sense that we use Charity Miles, an app that tracks distance and donates sponsored money to the charity of your choice based on your milage. Because we have different passions for varied issues, we tend not to run for the same charities. But because we have compassion and respect for each other's causes, we sometimes like to switch it up a bit and run for each others' organizations.

When I found out that the GO! St. Louis Marathon had an option to split the race up as a relay team, I called to see if they wanted to race with me to show people how easy and fun it is to use Charity Miles for their favorite cause...or several favorites. Without hesitation, the everyone was IN!

Two things we want everyone to take away from hearing about our race:
1) YOU can use Charity Miles for both your routine exercise and significant races to raise money for a charity at no cost to you.

2) Charity Miles offers sponsorship money for MANY powerful causes! You can run for the same one all the time or switch it up.
Whether you're racing this weekend or just out walking, load up Charity Miles and earn some money from one of the many charity partners. I'm sure you'll find one you like! If you see us at the GO! St. Louis marathon in our Charity Miles t-shirts, give us a shout!

So, now, please meet the team in relay order with their t-shirt colors representing the branded colors of our charities...

#1 Jen De Franco
(Lime Green for Shot@Life)

"I’m running for Shot@Life to raise funds and awareness for immunizations for children in developing countries.  Every 20 seconds a child dies from a preventable disease.  Diseases such as measles, rotavirus, pneumonia, and polio - all of which are fully preventable through immunization.  As a mother, I cannot image the thought of losing my children to an illness that could have been prevented with a simple shot.  But many mothers experience that fate every day.  That is why I advocate and - thanks to Charity Miles - I also run for Shot@Life.  All so that more mothers can have a shot at seeing their children have a shot at running a race, celebrating with friends, enjoying the glow of the finish line, giving back and a Shot@Life." 

#2 Kerry Galson
(Kelly Green for The Nature Conservancy)

The Nature Conservancy strives to preserve healthy ecosystems that support people and host the diversity of life on Earth. It's approach to landscape conservation is the perfect first step we can take in creating awareness about environmental awareness. First, because people can see and experience the beautiful green space. Second, because it creates habitat for wildlife. I'm running for this organization because if we don't preserve the environment, everything else is moot. If we don't have a planet, we have nothing.
#3 Myrdin Thompson, (Orange for Michael J Fox Foundation)
"I'm running for the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research in memory of my step-father, Donald Ledden, who passed away from complications due to Parkinson's in 2011. I've only been running for two years and when I started I was a walk/run/catch my breath kind of person, making sure to use Charity Miles. When I started taking my running seriously and met MJFF Team Fox members, I started dedicating my miles towards the foundation. Why I run is simple: because I can. Every day I wake up and my body doesn't betray me by not working, I can do a something to make a difference for someone else. April is Parkinson's Awareness month, and I believe - like Michael J. Fox - that "our challenges don't define us, our actions do." So, I dedicate my 7.5 miles of our race in memory of my step-father. In the end, it doesn't matter how fast you run your miles, it's just important to know that in the end #everymilematters."

#4 Cindy Changyit Levin, (Red for (RED) Campaign)

 "I'm running for the (RED) campaign, which raises support for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria. I know the deep love I have for my daughters would turn to despair if I didn't have the medications and resources to protect my children from such diseases of poverty. I want to spare other families from that grief. So, I rejoice that we all can be part of helping the Global Fund, which saves 100,000 lives every month. Thank you, Charity Miles, for giving us such an easy way to turn our races and everyday workouts into a life-saving exercise!"

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