120 members of the Rob de Castella led Indigenous Marathon Foundation (IMF) have signed up to participate in this months NT Santos City2Surf.
The runners and walkers will be part of the IMF Raw program, a grass roots, community driven health promotion program. Established in 2011 by the IMF as the Deadly Fun Runs and driven by IMP Graduates and Community Members, IMF RAW addresses chronic disease by normalising Running & Walking within Indigenous Communities and provides a free, inclusive and safe environment for individuals to flourish and feel supported in.
Traditionally held in late June as the Deadly Fun Run Championships in southern NT, for 2021 the events will be conducted within the Territories largest running event, the NT Santos City2Surf.
Former marathon world record holder, Commonwealth Games marathon champion and 4 time Olympian, de Castella said he’d previously enjoyed his experiences at the event and thought it would be perfect to bring their major program too.
“Having attended the NT Santos City2Surf personally on a number of occasions, it was the perfect event to align with our annual IMF Running and Walking Championships. With some of our runners from remote and regional communities it offers up something truly unique for them and a great opportunity to connect with the NT community through an amazing event. We look forward to bringing our runners and walkers from all over Australia up to Darwin for a few days of running.
“Our IMF RAW Championships are really important. They provide an opportunity to recognise our Indigenous community champions and bring them all together from across the diverse Indigenous areas of Australia - from the Torres Straits Islands and remote communities of Arnhem Land, to the regional country towns, and our major cities. All runners and communities have earned the right to represent their clans, mobs and families and run side by side with the Darwin community and compete together," said de Castella, Founder and Director of the IMP.