Maria Baltazzi wrote -
On July 27th, 2014, post-World Cup, I will be doing my 7th Continent and 6th charity marathon walk (26.2 miles). This time I will be fundraising for Grassroot Soccer (GRS), which was co-founded by Survivor Africa winner, Ethan Zohn. I was with Ethan in Africa from beginning to end as he likes to say: "his" producer. Needless to say after 39 days together we became very close.
Before coming onto Survivor, Ethan played professional soccer. Out of his winnings he co-founded a non-profit soccer organization to help save lives by preventing the spread of HIV among the youths in Africa. This vision grew into a greater vision... to create a global AIDS free generation through the power of soccer. GRS will be at this year's World Cup. I will follow soon after in support of their efforts when I do the Rio Marathon. This marathon is actually dedicated to Ethan. It is because of him that I started doing marathons in the first place. When he was first diagnosed with cancer (thankfully he's all better!), GRS and The Livestrong Foundation joined forces to sponsor those who wanted to do the 2009 NY Marathon as a fundraiser. I wanted to be supportive of Ethan, thus my marathon charity fundraising career was born. Never did I think it would take me around the world, but here I am. Please keep scrolling down to learn more about GRS.
Your donation is greatly appreciated (and tax deductible!). $1, $10, $100, it all counts.
Also all my training miles will be donated to:
Wounded Warrior Project
Thank you for your support.
More about Grassroot Soccer:
HIV is a preventable disease that can be stopped if we act now. New infections are trending down and recent research shows that existing tools, such as HIV tests and AIDS drugs, are having a dramatic effect on halting the spread of the disease. While the progress is encouraging, the spread of this disease remains tragically unnecessary.
The nations of Sub-Saharan Africa represent nearly 70 percent of people living with HIV and young people are among the hardest hit. Now more than ever, girls and boys are at the center of this epidemic.
- An estimated 33 million people are living with AIDS worldwide; 22 million of those are in Africa.
- Each day 5,000-6,000 new infections occur among youth.
- 45 percent of new infections occur among boys and girls between 15 and 24 years old.
- Young women ages 15 to 24 years old are as much as eight times more likely than young men to be HIV positive.
Addressing AIDS is the first step countries need to take to create healthier communities that can grow and prosper.
The GRS Program
The founders of GRS, who drive the organization’s work, are professional soccer players who lost many of their teammates and friends to AIDS. They decided they had to do something and created Grassroot Soccer, which has transformed the lives of 647,000 boys and girls in Africa.
GRS uses multiple approaches delivered through soccer to prevent HIV among youth, including education to adopt healthy behaviors and referrals for testing and treatment. Research shows that combining HIV prevention methods into a package approach can sharply reduce new HIV infections. Grassroot Soccer understands that every community differs in its access to services, cultural norms and levels of HIV education. Their program develops tailor-made HIV prevention options for the communities they serve.
EIN: 43-1957920 • http://www.grassrootsoccer.org/