News / USA

    Boston Marathon Charity Donations Rise Year After Bombing

    Archivist Marta Crilly holds a poster, an artifact saved from the makeshift Boston Marathon bombing memorial, at the City Archives in Boston, Massachusetts, March 27, 2014.
    Archivist Marta Crilly holds a poster, an artifact saved from the makeshift Boston Marathon bombing memorial, at the City Archives in Boston, Massachusetts, March 27, 2014.
    Reuters
    Boston Marathon runners are poised to set an off-course record this year, in the form of charity fundraising.
     
    Donations to charity teams linked to the world-renowned race are flooding in from around the globe and are poised to break last year's record performance of $21 million, a year after a bombing at the finish line killed three people and injured more than 260.
     
    Some of the biggest beneficiaries will include foundations set up by families of the victims, as well as some of the Boston-area hospitals that provided life-saving support for the injured, according to charity organizers.
     
    “There isn't any question it will be a record year,” said Tom Crohan, head of the non-profit program for race sponsor John Hancock. “What last year's events did was broaden interest in the positive elements of this race. People realize, if I'm ever going to get involved, this is the year.”
     
    The Boston Marathon has long been a major fundraising event for charities, since committing to raise money can help a runner secure a berth without meeting the race's fast qualifying time requirement.
     
    Last year's bombing energized fundraising to a new level, bringing in more charity runners and greater interest from donors.
     
    The Boston Athletic Association accepted 9,000 additional runners this year to accommodate the thousands of people caught mid-course at the time of the bombings, bringing the race to its second-largest field of runners ever at 36,000. Many of those additional runners have found places on new or expanded charity teams.
     
    One of those, Team MR8, shines a light on the increased public support among donors. Set up by the family of eight-year-old Martin Richard, who was killed in the explosions, the team's 100 runners have raised more than $800,000 in about four months.
     
    “This young boy was kind of the face of this. We're all affected, we all feel it,” said Susan Hurley, the founder of Charity Teams, which is managing Team MR8.
     
    Stephen Noxon, one of Team MR8's runners and a friend of the Richard family, said he has raised nearly $45,000 on his own.
     
    “The support has been amazing. These are people who identify in some capacity with the scope of this loss, people with kids, or people with a connection to the marathon,” he said.
     
    He said the team was counting down to the April 21 race.
     
    “It's going to be a very difficult day for us,” Noxon said. “The physical challenges will be small compared to the emotional ones. But we are looking forward to finally doing the run.”
     
    Team MR8's funds will support the Martin W. Richard Foundation, which aims to support peace through educational, athletic and community programs.
     
    Teams have also been set up in support of foundations for the other two people killed in the bombing, Krystle Campbell and Lu Lingzi, as well as Boston-area hospitals and charities that focus on research for injuries most closely related to the blasts, like amputation, and eye and ear damage.
     
    The Miles for Miracles team benefiting the Boston Children's Hospital - one of six trauma centers that handled blast victims - has raised $1.8 million so far, up from $1.6 million in 2013, said Stacey Devine, associate director of special events.
     
    Two ethnic Chechen brothers are suspected in last year's bombing. Investigators say they placed backpacks containing homemade pressure-cooker bombs near the race's finish line.
     
    One of the brothers, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was killed in a shoot-out with police days after the bombing. The other, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, is awaiting trial on terrorism charges. He faces the death penalty if convicted.
     
    When the Boston Marathon first started accepting charity running teams in 1989, total donations amounted to $6,000.

    You May Like

    Ugandan Opposition Candidate: Only Intimidation, Vote Buying Can Prevent Victory

    Kizza Besigye says he has been drawing large crowds and claims he has widespred support ahead of Feb. 18 vote

    HRW: Both Sides in Ukraine Conflict Targeted, Used Schools

    Rights group documents how both sides in Ukraine conflict carried out attacks on schools and used them for military purposes

    Sanctions Just Got Real for Over 54,000 North Koreans

    Shuttering of Kaesong complex ends virtually any hope of peaceful settlement to long-standing tensions on Korean peninsula in near future

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.