Thursday, October 18, 2007

Project Hope

Women's Running ResourcesWhen Vogel, who has degrees in human biology and international public health, met Williams, who studied history and cultural anthropology, in college, neither was much of a runner.

That changed postgraduation, when the two friends decided to travel the world and stopped in Spain for April's Madrid Marathon. By the time they arrived in Kenya last November, they were committed runners with plans to use their newfound athleticism to summit Mt. Kenya. They stayed at Tumaini overnight and never left--not even to climb the mountain. It was hardly a failed mission: Hope Runs emerged from the visit.

"The young are dying and the old like me are left to care for the children," says Anna Kariuki, one of Tumaini's founders. "But these two girls have done us proud. They have energy. It's something new, and it's exciting."
Beginner Running ResourcesHigh School Runner Resources

Four days a week, Vogel and Williams lead the kids on after-school runs. Twenty-one of them plan to compete in Kenya's Safaricom Marathon and Half-Marathon with Vogel and Williams in June. Most are preparing for the Hope Runs 10-K in Nyeri July 8, a fund-raiser for the orphanage.

Out on their run, the Tumaini children seem like happy kids anywhere. They race, cheer to keep each other going, complain of foot "injuries" that manifest on the uphills and suddenly vanish on flatter ground. As they stretch, the kids jabber about their training.
Read more about this remarkable program in Runner's World.

Read the kid's blog here

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