How many times have you heard the phrase, “it’s a marathon, not a sprint”? After last year’s E4K event, which coincided with members and friends of the Supernatural cast running in the Seattle Marathon to help raise money, that phrase has taken on a whole new meaning. But it is true! If we are going to live up to our mission of “conquering the world one random act of kindness at a time”, we need to keep showing up. Kindness is not a one-and-done sort of thing. If you have been a Random Acts supporter for a while, you probably know at least a little about our annual endurance event, Endure 4 Kindness (E4K). But if this is all new to you, then read on to learn why #E4KRA19 is a great way to kick-start your kindness habit!
What Am I Getting Myself Into?
First things first: is this an actual marathon? No. At least, not necessarily. E4K does borrow a lot from charity walks and runs, in that you sign up to participate and ask people to “sponsor” you in your efforts. Sponsors can donate a flat amount (which happens frequently), or they can pledge to donate a certain amount per repetition of the thing you do. So if you plan to walk or run a certain number of miles, or bake a certain number of cookies, or knit a certain number of baby blankets, your sponsors can pledge so many dollars per item. And as you can see, you can choose whatever kind of endurance task you want! Some of our supporters take their hobbies to the next level and do them all weekend long. Others take the opportunity to push themselves physically, just like you would a normal charity run. No matter what you choose to do, you will also be raising money for Random Acts and raising awareness of the things we all do together to help bring more kindness to the world.
Where Does the Money Go?
Some years, we have pre-determined a focus for E4K funds — see our #RANoHungryChild stories to learn what we were able to accomplish with last year’s E4K generosity! More often, though, funds raised through E4K go to the Random Acts general fund, which is what we are doing this year. We have a lot of projects going right now, and more still to come. Adding to our general fund gives us the freedom and flexibility to put your donations to use in the best way possible. To get a better idea of the projects we undertake and how we choose to fund them, check out the Fundraising page on our website.
Okay, I’m In. Now What?
This is the fun part! You get to decide what task you want to do during E4K weekend. This is a wonderful opportunity to push yourself physically, or even try something you have never done before, just like our Seattle Marathon participants from last year. Or you can choose a hobby or creative endeavor you enjoy and really dive into it! We have seen supporters knit blankets to donate to hospitals or to those experiencing homelessness. Friends who love baking have spent E4K weekend baking dozens and dozens of treats to donate to local first responders. And if you are feeling really industrious, you might consider getting your community involved in a group kindness act like a read-a-thon or doodle-a-thon! You really are limited only by your imagination.
Join the Crowdrise Team!
Once you have chosen your personal endurance challenge, you are ready to join us on Crowdrise! You can start your own team, or join an existing team. Setting up your own team page is easy, and takes just a few minutes. You will end up with your own team page to share as you look for sponsors. This is the page you will link to if you are emailing friends or sharing on social media. This is also where you can track how many donations you have received. Also, make sure you set realistic goals for yourself. We do not expect you to engage in your endurance activity for the entire weekend, after all! But we want to see you put yourself out there and challenge yourself to do “more”, whatever that might mean to you.
Ready? Set? Go!
Last but not least comes the big weekend itself! This year’s E4K event will take place October 26 & 27. Feel free to take pictures and videos of you enduring your big challenge event! This will help supporters find you and donate to you. Plus, we will get to enjoy seeing you as you rise to your own personal challenge! While you are preparing for the big weekend, please join our Facebook event, follow our E4K account on Twitter, and look for posts all over social media with the hashtag #E4KRA19.
We are so excited to see what challenges lie ahead for this year’s E4K! Please reach out to us on social media or contact us if you have any questions that were not answered here. We hope that the weekend’s adventure will encourage you to keep that kindness going all year long!