In Endurance Athletes We Trust

In Endurance Athletes We Trust

President and founder Matt Nelson provided an anniversary report of the remarkable last year of The Endurance Trust, an organization with a unique mission and wonderful goals.

Matt, who routinely competes in, volunteers for and crews for endurance events, knows that commitment to sport goes beyond merely competing in races.

An an avid adventure junkie, Matt did something about it – to the benefit of athletes and their preferred charitable organizations.

100 individuals around the world are now sponsored members of The Endurance Trust. Matt’s goal is to help athletes around the world race for free or defray their overhead costs in 24-hour cycling races, running races, marathon swims and expeditions in every continent while raising funds to help various children’s causes around the world

Since July 2009, members with the support of The Endurance Trust have raised significant funds for a variety of worthy causes including research for Pediatric Brain Tumors, Earthquake Relief for Haiti, funding for Autism School programs, help for AIDS orphans and even toward efforts to build libraries for the children of Mongolia. Members include English Channel swimmers (like Mallory Mead who is en route to the Ocean’s Seven), swimmers such as Jessica Gruber, Michelle Nelson, Portia Culley, Jim Barber and LeAnn Matsumura, and athletes in the 24-mile Tampa Bay Marathon Swim.

Matt also announced additional opportunities for sponsored teams and individuals in 2010 such as the Endurance Trust Youth Race Scholarship. These US$500 scholarships are awarded to pay for race entry fees of a select group of young athletes who represent the future of endurance sports. They receive race-kits and other sponsor support as they become ambassadors for The Endurance Trust. 2010 recipients include:

1. Kelbi Ervin (age 16), open water swimmer from Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
2. Chris Schrader, distance runner & rower from Hong Kong
3. Hans-Peter Hartog (18), open water swimmer from Wormerveer, Holland
4. Parker McColl (15) and Connor McColl (13), mountain biking from Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, USA

The Endurance Trust Outreach Scholarship recognizes young athletes who face obstacles, but through their love of sport, have found a way to make it to the starting line. The Endurance Trust awarded these scholarships to Nina, Pete and Oskar Karinen from Michigan. Their mother continues to foster the passion for biking that their father instilled in each of his six children before he passed away last December.

The sponsors who help make Matt’s vision and these deserving athletes’ goals a reality include Attitude Drinks/Phase III Recovery, BioFreeze, blueseventy, Crank Brothers, Dermatone, Fit2Run, Headsweats, Hypoxico, ISS Sport Supplements/ Oh Yeah! Bars, Leki, Mt. Borah, Nuun, Rail Riders, RaidLight, SPOT Personal Trackers, Tuf-Foot, Mt. Borah, Vespa Power Products and Wheel & Sprocket.

As the Endurance Trust motto says, ‘Nothing Great is Easy’ – the very same words on the memorial to Captain Matthew Webb – but Matt and his team endeavor to make it a little easier on the financial side for the athletes.

Upper photo shows Michelle Nelson, Kimberly Plewa, Jessica Gruber and Portia Culley. Lower photo shows Michelle Nelson.

Copyright © 2010 by Steven Munatones