November 15, 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 15, 2013) Washington, DC – The ever-growing “fun run” craze is sweeping Florida 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, Tampa’s USF Health BRIDGE Clinic , a student-run free clinic serving medically underserved Tampa residents, was presented with a check for $6,700 raised through its inaugural local Undy 5000. The grant will help fund colon cancer screenings, a service the clinic could not previously offer. All told, the Colon Cancer Alliance has donated more than $550,000 to local partners through its Undy 5000.
“Screening is the way to find colon cancer early and cure it,” said Frederick Slone, MD, faculty medical advisor to BRIDGE Clinic. “Until now, we had no funds to perform colonoscopies or for treatment if any cancer was found. With this grant, we can actually do something to save more lives.”
“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 BRIDGE Clinic 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.