Human civilization is facing an unprecedented crisis: a projected 40% shortfall in the availability of fresh water by 2030 under current business-as-usual projections of population and economic growth. In the first week of November this year, at the New York Marathon, international water advocate and founder and CEO of Thirst initiative, Mina Guli, set out on an ambitious challenge of running 100 marathons in 100 days to highlight this global water crisis.
Mina’s Indian Marathon started on 23 November in New Delhi and after running through various parts of Haryana, Rajasthan and Gujrat Mina concluded the Indian leg at the iconic Gateway of India in Mumbai. Having already completed more than 30 of the 100 marathons, through the UK, France, Italy, Uzbekistan and now India, Mina has experienced first-hand choke points that are feeling the impact of the emerging global water crisis.
“My journey so far has allowed me to meet so many incredible people and to see the real effects that water shortages are already having on our world,” says Mina. “For many of us, we don’t have a real concept of where our water comes from. We simply turn on a tap and the water is there. To meet children as young as 3 years old walking more than 2 km a day to collect water has given me a real appreciation of just how precious water really is.”
Mina’s passion to change how people think about water and have a world where there is enough water for everyone forever is what keeps her going. She has been meeting with local water heroes within each of the regions she is visiting. These water heroes are people who are devoting their time and energy to making a difference to the global water crisis. The alarming news of of Cape Town running out of water, and Shimla experiencing a similar situation earlier this year are only indications of the bleak future, if we don’t act today.
This is not the first time Mina is on such a journey. To highlight the global water crisis, in 2016 Mina completed the 7 Deserts Run – running the equivalent of 40 marathons across 7 deserts on 7 continents in 7 weeks. The success of the expedition encouraged Mina to undertake the 6 River Run in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 6. She ran 40 marathons in 40 days down 6 of the world’s great rivers on 6 continents. With media coverage around the world, including on CNN, BBC, ITV, ABC and CCTV, Mina’s messages about water have reached more than 4 billion people, inspiring a generation of water heroes.
Mina will head to Hong Kong and China after India. Follow her journey and help raise awareness for solving the water crisis.