RunForH20 10k 2015: Get Inspired!

We had the great opportunity to meet the folks at RunForH20 in April and we were lucky to learn more about their story. Read our interview with RunForH20 Race Director, Royce Sin, to get inspired for how we as runners can create an incredible impact through our sport.

How did RunForH20 start? 

Two compassionate friends, Melissa Hsu and Rainbow Choi, started the run in 2013. Rainbow is our charity representative from HOPE International; she has been working with them for the past 5 years now. Melissa was looking to do a charity 10k that raised fun for international development and asked Rainbow to connect her with an event.

Rainbow saw this as a great opportunity to help people who have a special place in her heart, which was Guatemala. She challenged and encouraged Melissa to organize her own 10k run event fundraiser and have all of the proceeds go to Guatemala for water projects.

Why HOPE International?

HOPE International Development Agency is a great charity known for its low admin costs and unique collaborative approach to development projects. For both of these reasons I am a supporter of HOPE!

What is the purpose of RunForH20? 

The primary purpose of the run is actually to inspire compassion amongst the volunteers and participants not only for Guatemala but also for those who lack the basic needs.

The secondary purpose is to generate the funds needed to help rural communities gain access to a clean water source!

How did you first get involved in the RunForH20?

I joined the Sun Run for a number of years but I find it too crowded, expensive and unfulfilling. Last year (2014) I skipped Sun Run and started to look for another 10k run where I could make a difference.

And then a week before the 2014 RunForH2O event - I met Rainbow at a dinner and she made her pitch and I was sold as a runner.

What inspired you to go from runner to Race Director in less than a year?

I started off as a participant in the 2014 and volunteered on the day. From talking with the leadership of that year I heard about all of their difficulties and I wanted to take part in it the following year.

I’ve already had some experience event planning elsewhere and thought I could help out as a volunteer.

When I spoke to Rainbow about it she asked me to take on the role of director. So I ran with it and here I am.

What makes this run special & unique?

It's all about relationships! We don't have a strong push on advertisements; the majority of our participants are related to the organizers one way or another. HOPE has grown over the past 40 years based on building lasting relationships with compassionate individuals who want to make a difference. Those principles stay true for this run as well.

For each runner who runs the race, what is the charitable outcome for their race fee? 

We aim to donate the majority of the race fees to HOPE, but we do reserve some of it to cover event expenses not covered by business sponsors.

With that said, 100% of the funds fundraised by our participants are sent to HOPE’s Guatemala projects.

What are you most excited about for RunForH20 this year?

I went to Guatemala with a group organized by HOPE in January. We spent some time with the Xejuyup community we are fundraising for this year and also the communities that were funded by the 2013 and 2014 runs.

It was amazing to see different attitudes on life - the ones with water and the ones without. I'm really looking forward to fulfilling our promise to the Xejuyup community and being able to show the impact Vancouverites can have on those they have never met.

RunForH20 is happening on June 6 this year, at Riverfront Park. It's a unique race venue that will take us to new areas of our city! For more details about the event you can check it out on their website here, and you can find the RunForH20 10K race route on RunGo here.

Happy running!