Kids Run Free was launched in 2010 as the personal project of lifelong friends and competitive athletes Martine Verweij and Catherine O’Carroll. Already owners of Raceways CIC, a successful sport management company, Martine and Catherine attended many running events where children watched adults participate but had no opportunity to participate themselves. They saw a need to create opportunities that would inspire kids to run and wanted to use their own events to provide this.
AND WITH THAT, KIDS RUN FREE WAS BORN
In 2011 Kids Run Free launched their first regular running event at Bentley Heath Park in Solihull, Warwickshire. This event offered all children, no matter what their fitness or ability, the opportunity to run for free in a safe environment. This volunteer lead programme can be found in multiple locations across the UK.
JUST TWO SHORT YEARS LATER
Kids Run Free wanted to inspire even more kids to start running, and where better to do this than in schools. Martine created the then named Kids’ Marathon in 2013. After connecting with Marathon Kids US in 2016, the programme was renamed Marathon Kids UK and now has children and teachers, in more than 300 schools across the UK, running multiple marathons throughout the academic year.
SINCE LAUNCHING IN 2010
Kids Run Free has seen an amazing 180 thousand children nationwide participating in their programmes. Most recently, in March 2018, Kids Run Free expanded to the Netherlands, Martine’s homeland, with a pilot of their schools’ programme.
All donations go to the Charity’s general funds which enables us to reach more children across the UK and beyond.