We sat down with Al Macartney, Event Manager with the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend, to learn about the race's charity program and how runners and charities can get involved.
1. Let's start with the numbers: How many charities are involved and how much money do runners raise every year at the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend?
This year we will have over 30 local and national charities participating within all events. Through their efforts and support from the community we anticipate close to $700,000 will be raised throughout the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend.
2. What's the process for fundraising? How does a runner raise money through their race?
There's a variety of methods for fundraising...We've introduced the ability for runners at the point of registration to indicate that they are interested in running on behalf of one of our official charities. Once they do so, we have the ability to direct them to the team leaders of those charities. We've seen some great success with this feature. Once a runner is connected with their chosen charity, then they simply collect pledges from their network of friends, family and work colleagues.
Several charities like the Ottawa Hospital, YMCA-YWCA and MS Society also have "guaranteed" entries whereby a portion of the enhanced entry fee goes directly towards their fundraising efforts. The Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend reserves 4% of all available entries for our official partner charities to use in their fundraising initiatives.
3. Why would you tell a runner to fundraise? What does it add to the experience?
The decision to fundraise is a personal one. The vast majority of those "running for a reason" have a particular affinity to the charity they have decided to run for. To participate in any of our events, regardless of ability takes a commitment. To enhance the experience and choose to help raise funds while doing so takes even a greater commitment. We know how much being able to participate in our events means to our runners. We believe there's a great sense of a dual satisfaction runners have knowing they are doing something so positive not only for themselves but for others. It provides a deeper meaning for them when asked...why do you run?
4. How do charities get involved with the race?
They simply contact me at [email protected]. I provide them with an overview of the weekend and outline of the charity component . I they're interested to pursue their organizations involvement, they complete an application form and we go from there...
5. Anything else you'd like to tell our readers about the charity program this year?
We'd like to thank all those runners who also make "one time" donations to the charity of choice from our registration page. This is a new element to our charity program and the response has been fantastic. And of course we want to thank all those who are fundraising on behalf of our charities and the team leaders who work so hard to recruit teams, promote our run and bring such a meaningful component to our event.
There may be snow on the ground, but Dr. Sony Singh is already looking ahead to spring, when Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend will be held in the Capital.
Dr. Sony Singh, Director of Minimally Invasive Gynecology at the Shirley E. Greenberg Women's Health Centre at The Ottawa Hospital.
On May 24 and 25, Dr. Singh, Director of Minimally Invasive Gynecology at the Shirley E. Greenberg Women's Health Centre at The Ottawa Hospital, will be heading the Women's Health Matters team. The team will fundraise for research, patient care and nurse education as a part of Run for a Reason, a Hospital fundraiser held in conjunction with Ottawa Race Weekend.
Physicians at the Shirley E. Greenberg Women's Health Centre are pioneering minimally invasive gynecological procedures, but more work is needed.
"We now need to expand our surgical, research and training programs to meet the needs of the thousands of women who are coming to us for help," explains Dr. Singh
Women's Health is Dr. Singh's reason for running - what's yours? Join Dr. Singh, and walk or run the marathon, 5K, or 2K and fundraise for an area of TOH that holds meaning for you.
Make a difference in just two easy steps:
1. Click here to register now for the event of your choice on the Ottawa Race Weekend website, and don't forget to check the box to indicate that you will be fundraising for The Ottawa Hospital.
2. Click here to sign up to fundraise for the Ottawa Hospital's Run for the Reason.
Don't delay - events are selling out fast!
We always like to hear from you about what’s working, and what you’d like to see covered in future editions of the newsletter. And we’re also interested in hearing your inspiring stories of athleticism and endurance. So don’t be shy!
Send your impressions, ideas and stories to [email protected].