Hope Runs: Helping Orphans Find Their Footing

Hope Runs: Helping Orphans Find Their Footing

To be successful, you only have to work half a day. And it doesnt matter if its the first twelve hours or the second.

I wish I knew who wrote that line – its one that a successful entrepreneur shared with me many years ago, and its been a constant in my life ever since.

Sometimes people confide that they believe becoming a New Radical will allow them to kick back a little (New Radicals reinvent their work to find more meaning and help save the world – for more, please seearchived articles). Yet every New Radical I know works just as hard as the quote suggests. Driven, motivated, passionate is how Id describe the men and women in this movement. Whats changed, of course, is what drives us: the desire to make a difference.

I didnt ask Claire Williams how many hours a day she works, but given what shes up to, I suspect shes a classic New Radical.

Claire, 27, and I met at theSkoll World Forumlast month. Shes in the MBA program at the Said Business School at Oxford University. She runs a non-profit organization in Kenya,Hope Runs, is organizing a massive fund-raising run – 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 weeks, writing her first book (more on that in a moment), and has started asmall finance companyfor people of her generation. She also commutes between England, Kenya, Buenos Aires (where her boyfriend lives) and San Francisco (her hometown). Heck, Claire may even work Martha Stewart-like hours (Martha famously sleeps about four hours a night).

How did a young woman end up doing all of this?

Claire earned a couple of degrees in anthropology from Stanford, and then realized that writing was her real passion. So she set out on a world tour, intending to write about her travels. Kenya was her first stop – she was going to climb Mount Kenya, and a friend suggested that she stay at a guest house at the foot of the mountain. The guest house just happened to be located in an orphanage (Tumaini), and, well, Claire never did climb the mountain. Instead, she founded a non-profit organization to help develop programs and raise funds for this home for AIDS orphans. Somebody noticed that she liked to run, and asked her if shed develop an after-school program for the kids, something athletic. And Hope Runs has grown from there. Today, they have a great media partner inRunners World magazine, and thousands of committed runners from the around the world. And one of the kids from the orphanage has just begun a training program with a coach at Stanford University.

I asked her where the idea for the 7 Continents run came from….. Read full post here

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