#WhyIRun | Freya for Bal Utsav | TCS World 10K Bengaluru 2016


Photo credit : Chenthil Mohan

Briefly introduce yourself. (Occupation, Location, Interests, Hobbies, etc) : Hi, my given name’s Fatema but most of my friends call me Freya. I live in Bangalore and I’m a Housewife and Freelancer. We are a big family of 7, that’s two of us – my husband and me and we have 5 dogs! I love reading, that’s my core interest, I can read anywhere, everywhere, anything and all the time. 🙂 I also enjoy gardening, crafting and running.

Why did you choose to run for Bal Utsav? : Frankly, running for Bal Utsav was an accident. I was looking to register, found registration open early on the Bal Utsav site and thought why not run for a cause. It was only after that that I realised how much good work the Bal Utsav team does and this got reinforced when I heard it first hand from a friend who has worked with them (but this happened much after).

Are you an ardent runner and what does running for a cause mean to you? : I am quite new to running. The last time I ran was in school and college but since January this year I have been running and I’m enjoying it! It’s been so wonderful to rediscover something I loved doing. And helping a cause while doing something I love is an excellent bonus, don’t you think? 🙂

How much donations do you wish to raise for the cause of #EducationMakesAllTheDifference during the 2016 Edition of TCS World 10K Bengaluru? : When I started out I didn’t think I could do much and so set a safe target of 10k but when I started asking friends and family, their support amazed me. Very quickly I exceed my goal, increased it, exceeded it, increased it again, exceeded it again and it just went on. Right now my target is to raise Rs.50,000 though this TCS10K run of mine.

What’s driven you to run and raise money? : What drives me to run is the joy I feel when running and the high I feel after at accomplishing it. Distance and time doesn’t matter, just getting on the road and running feels so good. Like I was saying I didn’t think I could raise much but as friends and family started contributing, I started to feel so good. Their support even made me run better, train harder. They made me feel like I can do anything!

What are your biggest challenges as a runner?
: I am a newbie runner. Right now my challenge is just pushing myself to do better, to discover just how much I can do, what my limits are and how far I can push them.

What’s one piece of advice you have for other runners? : My brother Mohammed, gave me my motto and I think it’ll work for anyone out there! RUN, BREATHE, SMILE

Are there best practices you have found that make your event successful year after year? : This is my first year. Ask me next year and maybe I’ll have answers. 😉

What was the feeling of being involved with Bal Utsav and its activities? : It feels good to give back to society, to help shape our future by proving education to a child and securing her/his future.

Do you think that the cause of #EducationMakesAllTheDifference could make a difference? : Yes I do. I see my househelp work hard to educate her children. I see how little opportunities they get, the challenges they face in spite of their interest and drive to learn. I hope these programs will help them and other children like them, I hope it will change their lives and give they the opportunities they deserve to get.

What does it mean to be back in 2017 for the cause of #EducationMakesAllTheDifference ? : I hope to run again for Bal Utsav, but it’s very far in the future for me to think about right now.

What would you say to motivate more people to run for a cause ? : Just that making a difference feels good in the soul.

Do you have a defined goal for your timing on race day? : I do but I don’t want to jinx it. Let’s see how it goes. 🙂

How has your family reacted to this challenge? : My family has been very supportive, helping me at every stage, pushing me to do better. They have even helped me spread the word and raise more money for my cause.

The financial outcome from 2016 will be applied in providing whole school transformation of Government schools, are you optimistic? : Yes I am. And I hope one of those schools will be the Govt. School in DoddaGubbi (Kothnur), Bangalore. It will be wonderful to see the lives of the kids around me change. My interest in children’s education after all started here with my househelp’s kids.

What is your running goal for 2016? : I hope to get better and better at running a 10k.

A runner you admire? : I admire all runners. It takes a lot to pound the road and to come back regularly to do it again and again.

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