This Girl Can boosts turnout for Parkrun
More than 1,300 women and girls took part in their first ever parkrun during a special event to mark International Women’s Day.
The event, which took place on 7 March and was a collaboration with our This Girl Can campaign, saw 10,000 more women take part in a parkrun in England than would be expected during a normal weekend.
In total, more than 70,000 women and girls walked, jogged or ran 5k at parkruns across the country.
The day also saw the highest number of female volunteers ever recorded at parkrun.
In total, 7,902 women and girls across England volunteered on the day – 1,500 more than a typical Saturday – with 300 women and girls volunteering for the very first time.
And 70% of run directors on the day were female, much higher than the current England average of 43%.
Frances Drury, our senior activation manager, said she was delighted the partnership with parkrun had encouraged so many women to take part.
“We would like to say a huge thank you to parkrun, to all the women that ran, jogged, walked and volunteered and to the many organisations such as Active Partnerships who worked with their local parkruns to make the day such a success,” she added.
This Girl Can worked closely with parkrun to promote the event, sharing heartwarming stories of inspirational women supporting each other to help women overcome perceived barriers, such as not being fit enough or being “too slow”.
Many parkruns boasted teams of all-female pacers and introduced a dedicated “first timer’s welcome brief” for the event.
Tess Agnew, our very own Sussex This Girl Can ambassador took part in Brighton as a pacer, and appeared on BBC South East to help promote the event and why it is important to encourage more women to take part.
Chrissie Wellington, parkrun global head of health and wellbeing, said: “it was wonderful to see so many women and girls joining us, many for the first time.
“parkrun really is a world for everyone, no matter your age, background, fitness level or gender. #IWDparkrun clearly demonstrated our commitment to inclusivity.
“We will build on the phenomenal success of this special day to ensure that parkrun continues to impact the health and wellbeing of as many people as possible.”