Community and Youth Engagement
As a nonprofit organization, we pride ourselves on giving back to our community through a variety of events supporting worthy causes and local youth.
Our community of passionate people inspire each other to reach their goals everyday. We host two weekly run clubs on Mondays and Saturdays, which aim to motivate people to run consistently and stay involved in our community. Beyond the events and races that we host, run club members have a group of training partners. Most importantly, every runner that interacts with Boston Road Runners becomes a friend. Our run clubs are free, consistent, and open to all. Everyone is welcomed with open arms, regardless of ability or experience. We have six ambassadors that help make this supportive environment possible. BRR ambassadors are energetic leaders that represent our organization and encapsulate our mission. They inspire our runners, such as through motivational posts on social media of their own running pursuits.
Because our community gives so much to us, we love giving back in any way we can. We partner with several nonprofits and assist these organizations with putting on road races in order to raise money for a cause they care about. One of our partners is the MataHari Womens’ Workers Center; we fundraise for their efforts towards social justice. We also use our platform to raise awareness for other causes, as seen through races like our Run for Suicide Prevention and International Women’s Run. By helping these nonprofits organize running events, we not only fundraise for important causes, but we help bring our community together and raise awareness for critical issues.
“BRR is an excellent organization! When I first came to Boston as a freshman in pharmacy school I struggled with finding a group that I really connected with and with running accountability! BRR has given me some of the best couple of years of my life here in Boston and I am grateful for the new friends and good times!” - Leah C.
We want to encourage kids to run to help them stay active and learn how fun exercising can be. To make this happen, all of our road races have discounts for runners aged 18 and under. We also put on special community youth races. All expenses are paid for by BRR and are free for our youth runners. In 2019, we partnered with Mendell Elementary School of Boston Public Schools to host the Mendell Mile. This untimed race invited children in grades 1-5 to run 1 mile. We had a total of 206 children running at this event alone. It is our goal to make all of our events free for our youth runners in the future.
Beyond the events we host, we partnered with local youth programs at the end of 2019 such as: ChildObesity180, Girls on the Run, Boys & Girls Club, Title IX Girls, and Road to the Right Track. These partnerships help drive youth engagement in all of our races, inspire children to be active, and support the work these organizations do.
Run Club Community
Our weekly run clubs are the heart of the Boston Road Runners community. The Boston Road Runners run clubs, hosted on Mondays and Saturdays, are free and open to people of all ages, skill levels, and backgrounds. We also host special run club events. Like our run clubs, these races are free and open to everyone. The majority of participants are run club members, however, because the races occur at the same date, time, and location of our run clubs.
We seek to foster a community of inclusion and enthusiasm and are always looking for new members to join and contribute to our community. Our run club promotes solidarity among runners who are like-minded in their running goals and who can help each other grow as athletes, leaders, and community members. 560 people intended to participate in the Boston Road Runners Run Club in 2019.
Our run club members are primarily female (68%). The median age of runners is 29 years old. The majority of runners are between 19 and 39 years old, making up 59% of participants. However, we have runners between 18 to 79 years of age. There is a place for everyone at Boston Road Runners.
Of our Massachusetts runners, just over 70% live in one of four major cities: Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, or Brookline.
In 2019, Boston Road Runners inspired 1,505 people to run. 945 (63%) of these individuals participated in our 11 special events, such as seasonal races and other competitive events. 560 people (37%) participated in our 8 run club events in 2019. We hosted 10 new events in 2019, including the Mendell Mile, a 1-mile fun run for students in grades 1-5.
Sex of Runners
Similar to other years, in 2019, BRR saw more female runners than we did male. Around 58% of our runners were female, compared to the 41% male runners we saw. There was a larger proportion of male runners participating in our special events than our run club events: 46% of special event participants were male, compared to the 32% of our run club participants who were male.
Age of Runners
Runners of all ages came to run with us in 2019, ranging in age from 7 to 67. Most of our runners fall between 19 and 29 years old, with 39% of runners falling into this age group. We also saw many runners in their 30s, with 20% of runners falling between 30 and 39 years of age. We are proud to report that our youth engagement was also significant this year - 13% of the runners we saw in 2019 were 18 and under.
Of those participants who chose to answer, the majority of participants were caucasian. Overall, there was representation from 6 different racial groups which indicates that these events were slightly more diverse than the paid events also held in 2019.
Home of Runners
The top 5 participant Massachusetts cities:
The run club had much more international participation than the races. Participants were from a total of 8 different countries as well as 28 United States and Canadian Provinces.
The chart below shows a map of Massachusetts with cities marked by a color coding system indicating the number of runners from that city who registered for a race in 2019. The key shows the range of the number of runners for each color.
22% of our runners came from Boston, followed by about 17% from Arlington, 7% from Cambridge, and 6% from Somerville. The following graph is a zoomed in version of the one above.
Massachusetts was by far the most popular state, with about 90% runners calling it home. Additionally, 93% of runners live in New England.
We would like to thank all of our donors for their support over the years. Without donations, Boston Road Runners would be unable to put on events for our community to come together and participate in. We appreciate all contributions, and we are grateful for the time and energy given from our donors; they have played a vital role in helping us come so far as a nonprofit.
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Thank you to everyone who makes Boston Road Runners possible, including our runners, volunteers, donors, and sponsors! We are very grateful that we are able to continue to grow our community. We love our runners and the positive impact that we are able to make on their lives. All of us at Boston Road Runners are so thankful for the support from sponsors and partners that allows us to do what we do.