School Team Challenge: Run For The Water

Join Us for the School Team Challenge at Run For The Water

Have the most participants on your team and win a group prize! Show your school spirit, lace up and participate in this uniquely transformative event, your entry to Run For The Water allows us to provide a person in Burundi with access to clean water – for life. Biggest team has the biggest impact! See you at the starting line!

Watch the short video, learn about the Gazelle Foundation’s mission.

Race Details

  • Run For The Water: - Annual 5k, 10-miler and kids k held Downtown in Austin, Texas

  • Date: Sunday, November 3, 2019, sign up is easy!

  • Distance: 5k, 10-miler and Kids k

  • Benefactor: the Gazelle Foundation

  • Fun Fact: Repeatedly named “Austin’s Best Race,” and best Non Profit”, Run For The Water draws thousands of runners and walkers each year

  • All participants get a race shirt

  • Be a part of something special: Runners are treated to Burundian drummers at the finish line

Since 2006, more than 35,000 runners have crossed the finish line, directly contributing to the Gazelle Foundation's ability to transform lives and entire villages in Burundi, Africa. And we have done just that. 100,000 people now receive clean water, including 26 schools, churches, and hospitals. Your participation in the race has helped the Gazelle Foundation fund the installation of 130 miles of clean water pipe, complete 50 water systems and created 4,400 new local jobs in Burundi.

Access to clean water close to home allows these children to stay healthy and less tired so that they can better concentrate at school.

Access to clean water close to home allows these children to stay healthy and less tired so that they can better concentrate at school.

For background, imagine a middle-school aged child, waking up every day without water and having to walk 1-3 miles to fetch water from a dirty river, before going to school. That is the only water a family would have to drink and cook with throughout the day. This is the reality for many middle school aged children in Burundi, Africa.

Why a running event?

“I didn’t have my first sip of good clean water until I was in the first grade.” —Gilbert Tuhabonye

Our story began long before our official formation in 2006.
It started on October 21, 1993 with Gilbert Tuhabonye, a Burundi survivor of the Hutu/Tutsi civil upheaval of the 1980’s and 90’s. Gilbert was a national champion runner as an 11th grader, but on this day, he would literally run for his life. When the centuries-old war between the Tutsi and Hutu tribes erupted, some of Gilbert’s Hutu classmates, parents, teachers and other Hutu tribesmen forced more than a hundred Tutsi children and teachers into a room where they beat and burned them to death. Gilbert, on fire, ran to freedom, and survived this horrific event.

In 2006, Gilbert wrote This Voice in My Heart, an autobiographical account of his upbringing and his tale of survival. The response to this touching book was overwhelming, creating an outpouring of people who wanted to help. The solution is through the Gazelle Foundation where Gilbert, our dynamic board of directors, and hundreds of volunteers work tirelessly to bring awareness to the needs of the Burundian people while educating our local community about the importance of the global water crisis and the need for humanitarian aid in Burundi. And the story continues to this day.

Gilbert Tuhabonye at the start of the Run For The Water Kids k.

Gilbert Tuhabonye at the start of the Run For The Water Kids k.

In addition, learning about the experience of children around the world and helping to improve their lives the School Team Challenge: Run For The Water aligns with one of the core tenets of CASEL, AISD Social and Emotional Learning Framework, Social awareness.  Participating in the School Team Challenge is an opportunity to grow the social awareness of all students at your school and can be incorporated in to a multi-disciplinary unit on water quality, social studies and physical education.