About 160 million children ages 5 to 17 around the world are engaged in child labor, working in jobs that deprive them of their childhood, interfere with schooling, or harm their mental, physical, or social development. Nearly half of them — 79 million children — work under hazardous conditions. By definition, child labor is a violation of both child protection and child rights and more than half of all child laborers live in middle-income countries.
These disturbing statistics have necessitated several movements and campaigns intending to bring an end to this social problem. One of the most determined efforts at ending child labor is the Not For Sale campaign which aims to end modern day slavery, trafficking, and exploitation. Today, Karena Cruse is pleased to announce she would join in the fight against child labor by raising funds for the Not For Sale campaign and running a marathon on a Hippity hop.
For the last six years, Karena Cruse has been running half marathons in order to raise awareness and funds for anti-trafficking efforts. In her first year, she ran the marathon in high heels, another year she ran it with heavy duty tow chains wrapped around her body, in another year she ran it in a long white wedding dress. This year, she has changed her focus to the 160 million children around the world facing child labor.
Karena will do the entire 13.1 miles of the half marathon bouncing on a bright orange Hippity Hop. Although painful, she chose this pattern for the race to remind people how much fun childhood should be. Speaking about this initiative, Karena had this to say, “I want people to laugh and smile and question what the heck I am doing. Humor opens a conversation better than spewing facts at people and trying to make them feel bad.”
The actual event starts on Saturday morning, November 5 but Karena’s journey will begin the evening before as she wants to make sure she gets to the finish line around the time other runners will complete the race. “I am planning an average of 1 mile per hour with a long break in-between to warm up, refuel, and recharge,” continued Karena. “The longest I’ve trained so far is 9 miles and I pray that my legs carry me through the night and into those last 4.1 miles.”
For details of the fundraiser by Karena Cruse, please visit https://www.facebook.com/donate/797204231329954/.