Lesser-known charities are jumping on the bandwagon, right alongside the American Cancer Society and the Alzheimer’s Association, and are raising thousands of dollars for their respective organizations. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.
How Charity Walks Work
Most charity walks require an entry fee of some sort. But, these fees are typically very affordable. In addition to actually walking, participants must garner sponsors willing to donate money to the cause. Each sponsor pledges a certain amount of money for each mile you walk.
Pledge forms are typically provided by the organization hosting the event. Utilizing your favorite social media platforms makes it easier to solicit sponsorships than ever before. Consider asking for donations on Twitter, Facebook and Periscope. You’ll probably be surprised by the positive responses you receive.
If you want to walk for charity but don’t want to solicit donations, you always have the option of sponsoring yourself. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this. You get exercise and the organization gets the money. Everyone benefits!
Popular Charity Walks
Many of the most popular charity walks are connected to nationwide organizations, with smaller chapters located all over the U.S. Some events are scheduled to take place all at once, like the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. Others are coordinated more at the local level.
Here are a few walks you may have heard of, along with the organizations that benefit:
* Walk a Mile in Her Shoes (money helps fund neighborhood rape crisis centers)
* National Down Syndrome Society’s Buddy Walk
* Out of Darkness Community Walk (American Association for Suicide Prevention)
* Pet Walk (money goes to animal shelters and to help prevent ( animal cruelty)
* Great Strides (funds research to help find a cure for cystic fibrosis)
* CROP Hunger Walk (funds used to feed the poor and fight hunger)
The easiest way to find out more about charity walks in your area, is to pick up the phone or email organizations that interest you. Speak to the person in charge of fundraising events. If your preferred organization doesn’t host an annual walk, talk to the powers-that-be about the possibility of setting one up. You never know until you ask, right?
Getting Ready for the Walk
Before actually making a commitment, it’s a good idea to gauge your goal. In other words, are you walking strictly for fitness purposes or are you participating more as a means to have fun with your friends?
Fitness experts recommend that the further you plan to walk, the more you need to prepare. On average, it takes 15 to 20 minutes to walk a mile. So, if you plan to walk five miles, you should be used to walking continuously for roughly two hours.
Walking for charity is fun, good for your health, and monetarily beneficial to the organization of your choice. It’s also a great family-oriented activity. If you’ve never participated in a charity walk, there’s no time like the present. Pick an event, grab your comfortable shoes and get walking!
Take a hike - a vacation hike that is. That's what we'll be talking about next time.