A global virtual event celebrating the beauty and value of our rivers will see the fastest marathoner in history and Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge and trail running great Ryan Sandes, who in 2013 became the first person to win an ultra trail race on all seven continents, join runners from 115 countries for the #WorldRiverRun.
Raising awareness about the importance of rivers, the four-day #WorldRiverRun began on Global Running Day (June 2) and will conclude on World Environment Day on Saturday, June 5. Organized by water campaigner and ultra-runner Mina Guli and held in partnership with WWF and with support from Aqua for All, the #WorldRiverRun seeks to draw global attention to the lifeblood of our planet — our rivers.
Kipchoge has dedicated his run to the River Kimondi in Nandi County, Kenya where he grew up.
He tweeted: “I am running for River Kimondi in Nandi county, I want the river to be restored by planting trees. So I dedicate my runs to the restoration of River Kimondi.”
Sandes, who is the first person to win all four races in the 4 Deserts Ultramarathon Series, has dedicated his run to the Disa River in his native South Africa. He tweeted: “Stoked to be dedicating my run on to the Disa River, in Cape Town for World Environment Day on Saturday. Spent many hours playing in the river as a kid and it would be great to see it restored.”
Runners, walkers and water activists from around the world have signed up to participate in the #WorldRiverRun and have so far collectively committed to cover a distance of more than 168,000 km. Participants dedicate walks and runs to a river of their choice, running for a river that is always running for them. Participating in the #WorldRiverRun is free of charge with all participants receiving a personalised race bib and certificate of participation.
Signing up to the #WorldRiverRun are participants from Bangladesh to Benin and from Argentina to Zambia, all who are dedicating their efforts to rivers as diverse as the Rhine, the Rovuma and the Mekong. Students at a school in the UAE have joined forces to show their support for the Indus, families and friends are showing solidarity for rivers they love, while Guli, the founder and CEO of Thirst, has chosen to run for the Orange River in South Africa’s Richtersveld Desert. It was during Guli’s time in the Richtersveld that she decided to dedicate her life to campaigning for water.
Registration for the #WorldRiverRun is open throughout the event at www.worldriverrun.com and all interested participants are invited to join the global run. For assistance with sign-ups, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.