‘Running for Rare’: NORD a Charity Partner of 2021 NYC Marathon

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The National Organization for Rare Disorders, known as NORD, was named an official charity partner of the 2021 TCS New York City Marathon, which will be held Nov. 7 both in-person and online.

“Supporting charitable causes and organizations are a long-standing tradition of the TCS New York City Marathon as it serves as one of the world’s largest fundraising platforms,” Christine Burke, senior vice president of strategic partnerships with New York Road Runners (NYRR), which stages the event, said in a NORD press release.

The marathon is the Road Runners‘ premier event and is held annually on the first Sunday in November. This year, runners from across the globe will participate in person and virtually in the marathon, one of the most popular 26.2-milers in the world.

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is the title sponsor of the marathon, which is now in its 50th year.

According to the NYRR, more than 400 organizations will participate in this year’s Official Charity Partner Program, which allows the selected groups to raise funds to support their missions. Official charity partners can offer guaranteed entry to marathon runners who commit to fundraising on their behalf.

Since its launch in 2006, the official charity partner program has fundraised more than $350 million for more than 1,000 nonprofit organizations worldwide.

“NORD is thrilled to join the legion of amazing official charity partners for the TCS New York City Marathon,” said Peter Saltonstall, president and CEO of NORD.

“We are working constantly to advance the rare community, and we’re proud to be running on their behalf too,” Saltonstall said.

The rare disease advocacy organization already has its own signature charity running program, Running for Rare, or R4R, which started as a grassroots team of four and has since grown to more than 250 runners. These NORD racers raise funds to support programs and services for people affected by rare diseases — and for those patients still undiagnosed.

The funds raised support undiagnosed patients, many of whom have been struggling to care for their health in the absence of an accurate diagnosis,” Saltonstall said.

All Running for Rare participants are paired up with a rare disease community partner, with whom they connect throughout their training, leading up to race day.

The program inspires runners to make their way across the finish line and allows each partner to tell his or her own unique story, raise awareness, and find support from others undergoing similar challenges.

Over the past 12 years, the Running for Rare Team has raised more than $1 million.

“Together as a community we can take action, raise money, and increase rare disease awareness to help patients get the answers and the care they need,” Saltonstall said.

Anyone interested in joining the Running for Rare team as a marathon runner or community partner may apply here. Companies may learn more about sponsoring R4R here.

“The marathon exemplifies the running community’s spirit of giving back, and no group demonstrates that more than the thousands who choose to run for charity,” Burke concluded. “We are proud to support the efforts of … NORD and the positive impact they have made to their community.”