What happens when 40 wheelchair users take on the world's leading 10K running event?

We're often asked what sports can disabled people play. Well, we've seen all sorts: basketball, tennis, snooker, boxing, racing - we could go on. Every time, we see empowered individuals proving the power of sport to themselves and others. Last week was no exception.

The Motivation India team got together with wheelchair users and volunteers to take part in one of the world's leading 10K running event. In this blog, our Regional Director for South Asia, Biju Mathew, explains more about the day.

What was the event all about?

The TCS WORLD 10K is a sporting event that encourages a healthy lifestyle and sporting spirit to the people of Bangalore. Started in 2008, today the event is the world’s biggest 10km run and has seen participation from top elite athletes in the world.

Motivation India decided to join the event to spread the message of inclusion and to inspire wheelchair users to participate in a mainstream sporting event. 65 other charities and non-governmental organisations participated in the event, too, with approximately 300 persons with disabilities participating.

How many people from Motivation took part in the event?

The 125-member Motivation team was led by 40 wheelchair users and supported by 85 volunteers.

Volunteers included employees from Herman Miller Furniture India and NTT Data Bangalore – they also kindly provided T-shirts for the runners and other Motivation branded material. Both the companies support Motivation India work as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility. Together they’ve also helped us to provide 300 wheelchairs to disabled people in India.

What was the best thing about the event?

I believe the best thing about the event was the support and encouragement from the public that boosted the morale and confidence of all the persons with disabilities. As an organisation it gave us a huge amount of visibility and public engagement, too.  

One of the participants, Srinivasulu said “DISability to Ability” to me. Before participating he was feeling disabled, not able to do all activities, but after participating he felt he was also abled person like others.