On Sunday, Isha Jain will celebrate her 16th birthday with her friends, as she does every year. However, this time, the Class 10 students wouldn’t be at a party but at the Mumbai marathon, running for a cause.
“I have been participating in the Dream Run for the last two years, and since my birthday coincides with it this year, I encouraged my friends to join me and contribute to a cause instead of buying gifts,” said Jain, who has raised Rs. 6.5 lakh for Isha Vidhya, a non-profit organisation that works for children’s education. Several city students have been taking up social causes through the marathon, and are training for the six-kilometer run.
“I have been part of the marathon before since I helped my aunt in the wheelchair race, but this year, I decided to participate to support the cause of education,” said Disha Sancheti, 15, who will be with Jain at the marathon.
Last year, Meera Mehta, 14, became the youngest runner to raise money in the Dream Run, when she raised Rs1.5 lakh a non-profit that works for education and health care of children. “I put up an appeal on Facebook, and several of my friends from abroad have contributed,” said Mehta, who has managed to raise Rs3 lakh so far.
“We had participated in the Dream Run to raise awareness about road safety last year and will take it up again this year,” said Dhruv Jain, 18, a student from HR College, Churchgate. A group of 40 students from the college will put on their running shoes for the cause on Sunday.