November 27, 2013
For-Profit Fun Runs Come Under the Microscope
When You Lace Up Your Shoes For Your Next Run, Know Why You’re Doing It
(November 27, 2013) Washington, DC – The ever-growing “fun run” craze is sweeping Colorado and the rest of the nation. Whether it is a Turkey Trot to burn calories before you indulge or a Resolution Run to ring in the New Year – these events are certainly gaining popularity. A fun time paired with supporting a good cause can be the perfect motivation to lace up your shoes. But, do you know what your money is actually going toward?
Participants are starting to ask these types of questions because many races are now being organized by for-profit companies. In fact, these runs grew to about 2 million participants last year, nearly doubling from 2011. What used to be hinged on road races raising funds for charity has turned into a for-profit game of who can walk away with the biggest pay-out. And the potential is huge, considering the most popular endurance runs bring in up to $50 million in annual revenue.
That’s where the controversy can arise. Many people gearing up for nontraditional races assume a portion of their registration fee goes to charity – but that’s not always the case. In a time when trendy for-profit runs are attracting some stark criticism, the conversations raise the question: do you know where your race money is going?
You do when you participate in the Colon Cancer Alliance’s Undy 5000 5K Walk/Run, a national 5K series asking you to grab an underwear-themed outfit and hit the pavement for a cause you can get behind – saving lives.
Recently, Denver’s University of Colorado Cancer Center was presented with a check for $37,953.24 raised through this year’s local Undy 5000. The grant will support the Center’s Colorado Colorectal Screening Program, a statewide program giving free colorectal screenings to low-income residents without health insurance. All told, the Colon Cancer Alliance has donated more than $550,000 to local partners through its Undy 5000.
“Funds from the Undy 5000 have contributed to our success in screening more than 15,000 Coloradans since 2006,” said Holly Wolf, PhD, MSPH, Director of the Colorado Cancer Screening Program. “This program is a valued resource in our community health centers to screen individuals who would otherwise be unable to afford it. Funds from the Undy 5000 help to make this program possible.”
“We’re working to knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers,” said Jasmine Greenamyer, Colon Cancer Alliance CEO. “Every dollar raised through the Undy 5000 goes toward that lifesaving mission.
Partnering with groups like the University of Colorado Cancer Center allows us a greater reach into local communities and together, we’re increasing prevention and raising awareness of this disease.”
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The Colon Cancer Alliance’s mission is to knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers. This mission is being accomplished by championing prevention, funding cutting-edge research and providing the highest quality patient support services. Learn more at ccalliance.org.