Tata Mumbai Marathon 2018 breaks all charity records; raises more than ₹ 25 Crores for 259 NGOs, pre-race day

The Tata Mumbai Marathon is more than just about finishing a race. It transcends sport and promotes the power of the collective to make a difference. India’s largest charity platform, the Tata Mumbai Marathon promoted by Procam International has already helped to raise  25 crores, which will help educate children, improve healthcare, provide livelihood opportunities and safeguard the environment in communities across the country. Individuals and companies leverage the platform provided by the event to raise funds and awareness for causes close to their heart.

The Charity Platform

The event’s charity platform is designed and facilitated by United Way Mumbai – TMM’s official Philanthropy Partner. United Way Mumbai reaches out to hundreds of NGOs, companies and thousands of individuals across the country. Those that wish to make their “RUN EXCEPTIONAL” partner with United Way Mumbai and register to run for a cause or fund-raise at TMM. The funds raised are routed to projects across the country through NGOs, who carry the impact forward into marginalized communities with the greatest need. The charity figures have risen steadily from a humble ₹ 1.4 crores in 2004 to  25 crores, so far, in 2018.

Jayanti Shukla, CEO, United Way Mumbai, said, “There are many extraordinary stories in the 15th edition of the Tata Mumbai Marathon. We have 4 people running the marathon on their birthday. The oldest person to run the marathon for charity is Mr. Bhim Singhal, who is 84 years old, proving that age is, indeed, no bar. Carrying that sentiment forward, for this edition, we at United Way Mumbai wish to showcase the efforts of our Young Leaders in raising funds for and advocating causes they believe in. Young Leaders are remarkable people (below 21 years of age) who are raising funds for charity through the platform. They are sensitized to social issues, passionate about the projects they support and great ambassadors for a more socially conscious generation. This year, we already have 231 young leaders registered, and this figure is growing by the day.

She further added, “We firmly believe that Philanthropy when started early, has multiple positive consequences. Not only does it help social causes and NGOs raise funds for their immediate need, the youth, when exposed to social problems at a young age are more likely to grow up being highly responsible adults. They also gain considerable exposure while fundraising that helps mould their personality and help them become confident future leaders.”

On this occasion, Vivek Singh, Joint MD, Procam International said, “Each year, the TATA Mumbai Marathon has surpassed the amount raised for charity. Our journey with our philanthropy partners, United Way Mumbai has been incredible and we are proud to contribute to society in myriad different ways. We are happy to have lived up to our ethos #BetterTomorrow and will continue to propel one another to be better too!”

Stories of Change, Young Leaders in focus:

This year we have a panel of Young Leaders who have contributed roughly 24% of the total funds raised, which is much higher than the contribution of fundraisers who are in their twenties and thirties which is 4% and 8% respectively. 

Siddharth Dutt Roncon, at the age of 12, has taken over the baton from his mother Priya Dutt, a veteran fundraiser to raise funds for the Nargis Dutt Foundation and, with his friends Arav and Rajveer (both 13 years of age) has raised over ₹ 16.1 lakhs, the highest amongst Young Leaders. Siddharth explains his motivation for raising funds, “My special experience was when we went to the Borges home, for Diwali. It was nice to see all the happy faces of the people and kids when we distributed the food around. It was fun meeting the children over there, but seeing their suffering moved me and that made me want to raise more.”

Nandan Venkatesan is raising funds this year for ‘Spark A Change’ which was founded by his mother Nirmala Venkatesan. Nandan has raised over ₹ 1.6 lakhs in this campaign. He says of his reasons for fundraising, “I realised that every child has a right to quality education and equal opportunities and it is for us to make it happen.”

Kabir Diwanji, at the age of 13, is raising funds for the second time for Concern India Foundation. He has already surpassed the amount he raised last year, by raising ₹ 1.6 lakhs this year. He says, “The Marathon has given me the opportunity to raise funds for the education of children, not as fortunate as me, while also giving me the opportunity to participate in an event which is the greatest fun.”

Ambar Dange, a first-time fundraiser has raised over ₹ 3.5 lakhs for Salaam Bombay. He says, “Collecting funds for Salaam Bombay is not only exciting; it is an exhilarating feeling when you realize that these funds will help uplift the lives of many. I believe that regardless of gender or socio-economic status, it is the fundamental right of every child to be educated.”

Meera Mehta has been a constant in the Young Leaders list since 2012 and is supporting Shrimad Rajchandra Love and Care at the Tata Mumbai Marathon. Currently, she is studying to be a medical doctor and has already raised ₹ 4.1 lakhs to help build a 250-bed hospital for the underprivileged in Dharampur, Gujarat.

Nishiki Varma is raising funds for Family Planning Association, India to help provide low-cost sanitary napkins to young girls from underprivileged backgrounds and has raised ₹ 91,000 this year. She says, “Being a part of FPA India, I intend to raise funds in order to provide low-cost sanitary napkins for young girls from underprivileged backgrounds so that they can successfully complete their education to become empowered individuals.”

Isha Gulati is, once again raising funds with her sisters Malini and Saanya for Thalassemia children. They have raised over ₹ 11.5 lakhs for Think Foundation. Her motivation to raise funds for Think Foundation is because, “Having lost two family members to Thalassemia Major, we have personally experienced the extensive medical care and financial resources that this illness requires.”

Aadhya Shivakumar is in her 5th year of fundraising for Isha Vidhya through the Mumbai Marathon. She has raised ₹ 2.27 lakhs, which will go to provide education for rural children. Aadhya finds time to raise funds despite her school work. She says, “I will be running for the 5th consecutive year in the Mumbai Marathon, supporting the cause of education of underprivileged children. Rigorous schoolwork apart, I feel this is important. Just a few hours of my time and your support can send a child to school.”

Arya Panchal, supporting The Light of Life Trust has raised ₹ 64,500. A class 10 student, Arya has been raising funds for the last 3 years. Her fundraising efforts stem from a desire to help rural children complete their education. She says, “The Mumbai Marathon is a great way to reach out to people from all walks of life to raise funds for the underprivileged children from rural India who are probable school dropouts and support them to complete their secondary education.”

Nandini Petluri, an 11-year old has raised over ₹ 50,000 for Think Peace Foundation. Nandini’s family moved to India from the States last year but she has been raising funds from there for the last 4 years. At such a tender age, she has formed a volunteer group in the US to support Think Peace and wishes to extend it in India this year. She says “I am excited to start my journey in India though the Mumbai Marathon and look forward to raising more funds, involving more kids and volunteering more time for Think Peace.”

Vedant Shah is a 13 year old and this Marathon he is raising funds to create awareness on Sexual Abuse of Children. He has raised over Rs 60 thousand in support of The Foundation’s HEAL program, where HEAL stands for Help Eradicate Abuse through Learning and works to create a safe environment for children.