A Team Runs 146 Miles to Benefit Love146
Two children are sold into slavery every minute throughout the world. This tragic statistic motivated Mark Schilling of Utica, New York to organize a fundraiser to benefit Love146, an international human rights organization working to abolish child slavery and exploitation.
The “Run for Love146” is a 146-mile run from Albany, New York to New Haven, Connecticut—the US headquarters of Love146. A team of runners will make the trek relay style over a five day period from July 23 through July 27. Stops will be set-up each day where the team will focus on raising awareness for the organization.
Mark has been a runner for twelve years. He has competed in several marathons and finished in the top ten at the 2008 North Face Endurance Challenge. “The issue of child trafficking is a devastating one that will drive anyone who knows the facts about it into action,” said Mark when asked about his idea. “I was so moved by the story of how Love146 got its name, so moved by the stories of what these children face when they are sold into slavery. I’m simply taking something I can do and using it to hopefully raise awareness and funds for an outstanding cause.”
Mark currently has twelve team members from his church, Redeemer, in Utica and is hoping to gather several more from Redeemer’s Albany campus, which is also the start of the course at 6:00 a.m. on July 23. From Albany, the team will travel to Catskill, New York; Kingston, New York; New Milford, New York; and finish in New Haven, Connecticut. The team will dedicate time in each city traveling door-to-door to inform residents and businesses of the run, and to raise funds. A lead van traveling alongside the team will feature Love 146banners.
Rob Morris, Co-founder and President of Love146 …”We are always encouraged and deeply moved by the efforts of people like Mark Schilling who don’t just ‘talk” about an issue, but really engage. Our hope is that through Mark’s efforts and those who join him, that more people will become aware that slavery still exists and we can all play a part in ending it.”
It is estimated that human trafficking generates approximately $32 billion annually. More than 1.2 million children are forcefully engaged in trafficking every year. Formed in 2002, the mission of Love146 is to abolish child slavery and exploitation through strategic prevention and sustainable aftercare, focusing on hot spots in Asia, Europe and the United States. Love146 was named an “Agent of Change” by GQ Magazine and has earned the MySpace Award for social justice.
Information on the upcoming “Run for Love” can be found on the Run for Love 146 Facebook fan page.
The run departs from Redeemer Church in Albany (183 Schoolhouse Rd) at 6am on 7/20. There will be a meet and greet at the church at 6pm on 6/19. Both Mark Schilling and Love146 president Rob Morris are available for interview. Contact: Elizabeth Johnston / 203-772-4420