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World's Elite Runners to Help Children in Africa

by Staff
May 18, 2010
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SEATTLE, ( -- The Comrades Marathon in South Africa is known as one of the most grueling endurance foot races on earth. On Sunday, May 30 (the 85th anniversary of the race) 20,000 athletes from all over the world will start the 56-mile foot race from Pietermaritzburg to Durban. For 18 of them, this race marks the start of something more than just glory. 17 men and one woman will run as part of Team World Vision, a program of humanitarian relief organization World Vision and meet the children in Africa whose lives they have helped change forever.

The Ultimate Cause: While training for The Comrades Marathon, Team World Vision runners have a goal of finding 1,500 sponsors for children living in extreme poverty. Two days after the race, they will travel to South Africa and Kenya to meet the children for whom they found sponsors. They'll also talk with community leaders and elite Kenyan runners in hopes they will become ambassadors for work World Vision is doing in their communities.

The Elite 18: Team World Vision's competitors include: Josh Cox, 50K American record holder; Andy Baldwin US Navy Lieutenant and star of ABC's The Bachelor, Paul Martin, Paralympics medalist and Ironman world record holder for amputees, Bart Yasso, legendary marathoner from Runner's World Magazine and Team World Vision organizer Michael Chitwood, a four-time Ironman tri-athlete.

The Impact: World Vision child sponsorship programs establish sustainable, long-lasting programs in the world's most impoverished regions. A $35/month commitment helps provide clean water, improve agricultural conditions and provides educational opportunities for children and their communities.

The Comrades Marathon One of the oldest and most challenging marathons in world history. The race began in 1921 when 34 determined runners left Pietermaritzburg for Durban to honor their comrades who died during the Great War. The event has occurred every year except during World War II, growing to 20,000 competitors today.

World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicate to working with children, families and their communities worldwide by tacking the causes of poverty and injustice. For more information please visit

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