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Race For Life

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Hey guys!

So, I got into a battle with several women at work over the cancer research race for life and thought it would be good to get some balanced opinion on it.

For those who don't know the Race for Life is a 5km (2ish mile) run for women only to raise money to fight cancer.

The story goes for me is that when I was 14 my nana died of breast cancer and the following complications, and I wanted to do the Race for Life and was given a straight 'no' because it was for women only (this was in 1998, the fourth year it was on) and was pretty much told to go away.
Fast forwards to now and the lady at work tells me she is doing the Race for Life and how much was I going to sponsor her, the words "I don't support it" have never been met with such stares! Also the inevitable line "So, you don't care about people getting cancer?" was uttered and then the great debate rolled on.

The thing that brings me to anger about it is everyone who runs gets a plaque on their chest with the name of someone they know who has or been affected by cancer, personally I could write a list of about 7 names, but I am not a woman, so I can't run it.
The Race for Life, to me, is the most pointless gender segregation fund raiser especially considering the size of it. Everyone is affected by cancer, be it a death in the family or your own death - to segregate who can raise money based on gender is absolutely wrong in my view.

Thoughts?
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Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Can women take part in Movember?

    Are there no other fundraising movements that you could take part in? Is Race For Life the only cancer fundraiser? Is this plaque/sponsorship saying who you're running for only allowed on the Race for Life?

    You're not segregating who can raise money- there is absolutely nothing saying that men cannot raise money in some other form. Just that these particular races (which are well followed, you can see from the uptake) are aimed at women. Much like Movember is aimed at men.

    It would be interesting to see the gender split of people who run gender non-specific races such as Sports Relief races (if they still run!)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Difference is that Movember is for testicular and prostate cancer. Women don't have testicles, and they don't have prostates. So they can't get those cancers. But men can and do get breast cancer. I personally think it's retarded that men can't run race for life. And if the guys at work were doing movember, I'd invest in some eyebrow pencil and draw a different design on every day.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    My Dad died of prostate cancer. So when we had his funeral, we asked for donations to the Prostate Cancer Charity. If I want to raise money for prostate cancer specifically, I sponsor someone who is doing Movember - and don't complain that I am unable to do it myself, and that it's sexist.

    I'm neither here nor there on whether Race for Life should be female only or not, but people complaining it's sexist and discriminatory bugs me a little, because you can find examples of discrimination everywhere if you *really* look hard enough, and I don't think it really stops people from raising money if they want to. There are other vehicles for your fundraising efforts if you choose not to support this one.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It's not worth getting cross about. But it is gay.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Can women take part in Movember?

    Are there no other fundraising movements that you could take part in? Is Race For Life the only cancer fundraiser? Is this plaque/sponsorship saying who you're running for only allowed on the Race for Life?

    You're not segregating who can raise money- there is absolutely nothing saying that men cannot raise money in some other form. Just that these particular races (which are well followed, you can see from the uptake) are aimed at women. Much like Movember is aimed at men.

    It would be interesting to see the gender split of people who run gender non-specific races such as Sports Relief races (if they still run!)

    The big difference between Movember and Race for Life is that women are not able to grow a mustache in a month, I am sure if a woman *could* do Movember there would be no problem at all with participation - but Race for Life is about running, and both men and women can run.

    I also have raised money elsewhere for cancer research, what I was speaking about specifically was the Race for Life's gender segregation, not about inability to raise money in that manner.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Fiend_85 wrote: »
    But men can and do get breast cancer.

    Race For Life isn't even supposed to be about breast cancer. It's supposed to be ALL cancers. Which makes it even more ridiculous.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm neither here nor there on whether Race for Life should be female only or not, but people complaining it's sexist and discriminatory bugs me a little, because you can find examples of discrimination everywhere if you *really* look hard enough, and I don't think it really stops people from raising money if they want to.

    The classic "why does this turd matter when there are other turds?" argument. Why bother dealing with inequality in this country when there more egregious example elsewhere in the world?
    There are other vehicles for your fundraising efforts if you choose not to support this one.

    There are. But it doesn't affect whether or not Race for Life should be gender exclusive, the topic of this conversation.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The big difference between Movember and Race for Life is that women are not able to grow a mustache in a month, I am sure if a woman *could* do Movember there would be no problem at all with participation - but Race for Life is about running, and both men and women can run.

    I also have raised money elsewhere for cancer research, what I was speaking about specifically was the Race for Life's gender segregation, not about inability to raise money in that manner.

    I'm apparently now doing movember...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So what about fundraising events that are aimed at say, children only? Would you feel those discriminatory, based on the fact that you're not a child? Or say one for over 50s? I'm all for equality, but I don't necessarily see that a gender specific event (where there are non-gender specific equivalents) has to be discriminatory.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Fiend_85 wrote: »
    I'm apparently now doing movember...

    Yes- she's agreed to draw on her moustache daily, and post growth pics.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So what about fundraising events that are aimed at say, children only? Would you feel those discriminatory, based on the fact that you're not a child? Or say one for over 50s? I'm all for equality, but I don't necessarily see that a gender specific event (where there are non-gender specific equivalents) has to be discriminatory.

    I used to be a child but I have been promoted to adult, I am not over 50 but I will be one day (hopefully), I will never be a woman, so while everyone has been a child and most people will be over 50, only half of people will be women - which is why I see Race for Life as discrimination.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I cant help thinking they'd make more money if it was open to men as well....
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Tbh I don't think that a fundraising event can be discrinatory, unless they were only raising money for female cancer suffers. I don't really get why Race for Life is women only, but it is, so you will have to run a different but largely similar race instead. Probably just a gimmick to get people who wouldn't normally donate to charity to do it? Is it really a huge deal, though?
    Fast forwards to now and the lady at work tells me she is doing the Race for Life and how much was I going to sponsor her, the words "I don't support it" have never been met with such stares! Also the inevitable line "So, you don't care about people getting cancer?" was uttered

    This bit, however, would have my blood boiling. I have two charities that I support, and I don't give to any others except in pretty exceptional circumstances. That doesn't mean I don't give a shit about all the other causes in the world, and anyone who would draw that conclusion is a moron. I haven't got a lot of spare money, but what I can afford to give, I want to give to my choice of charity, and not every single cause that everyone I even vaguely know is doing a sponsored event for :grump:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Sorry but the issue here isn't whether Race for Life is only open to women or not (NB here there is also Man on the Run which is only open to men, arrange by a colleague of mine).

    The issue here is the bullying because someone has exercised a choice whether to give to a charity or not. The reason why not is immaterial. I personally refuse to support the anti-animal exports movement - I eat meat FFS, it would be so hypocritical. The amount of abuse I've had because of my stand...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    gender specific events for gender specific charities is fine in my book. Like Movember. But race for life is for cancer research uk, and so shouldn't stop men from joining in.

    However. Having been on the receiving end of some charity related bullying. it's not on.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The issue here is the bullying because someone has exercised a choice whether to give to a charity or not. The reason why not is immaterial. I personally refuse to support the anti-animal exports movement - I eat meat FFS, it would be so hypocritical. The amount of abuse I've had because of my stand...

    You don't even have to say no to get funny looks. Someone once thought it was weird that I wouldn't sponsor him without first looking into the charity he was asking me to support.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So many people ask for sponsorship that I set targets. If it were a running thing, you'd have to complete it in a set time. Like a marathon in sub 4 hours, that I set a guy I knew who was super fit. But I had someone blow up when she missed her target and I said sorry, but you didn't earn it.

    I thought it was understood that I didn't have a lot of money to give to everyone, and that the target was to demonstrate that the charity was important...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Charity bullying and guilt tripping works only on some levels, I am sure if I was more sensitive I would have reacted differently and compared to how the girls at work usually act calling me heartless is practically foreplay.

    People always get offended when you directly refuse to sponsor them, my workmates didn't like my reasoning which was the stickler for me, made me question if I really was in a majority of one :nervous:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Fiend_85 wrote: »
    So many people ask for sponsorship that I set targets. If it were a running thing, you'd have to complete it in a set time. Like a marathon in sub 4 hours, that I set a guy I knew who was super fit. But I had someone blow up when she missed her target and I said sorry, but you didn't earn it.

    I thought it was understood that I didn't have a lot of money to give to everyone, and that the target was to demonstrate that the charity was important...

    So what about the people who ask for sponsorship to walk Machu Picchu? I didn't give the person who asked me a straight no, I asked her if she would sponsor me when I went on holiday as well. She was not happy.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't do it for everything. If you're walking to machu picchu then that's pretty good shit, you'll either get something or you won't. Also sometimes it'll be, ten quid for doing it, and a bonus for every minute under....."

    On the other thing, I don't think it's unreasonable to have charities you don't support. I re-home rescue animals, rather than buy a puppy, but I won't give money to the RSPCA, for example.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    You don't even have to say no to get funny looks. Someone once thought it was weird that I wouldn't sponsor him without first looking into the charity he was asking me to support.

    I get a lot of this. I've stopped giving to charities when I've found out 40% of donations go to their running costs. That Kony 2012 lot were the best for that: "we're not a traditional charity". No, you're a bunch of religiously hipster-ish fucking shysters.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    What's there to stop you from entering a 5k race and raising money for Cancer Research UK?:confused:

    Going back to sponsoring people - I had this discussion with my dad last year. I ran a 10k and he said that he'd give me £5 if I did it, which I did. He also said that it does depend on the charity.
    Someone once thought it was weird that I wouldn't sponsor him without first looking into the charity he was asking me to support.

    I see nothing wrong with wanting to know what the charity does before donating. I've done it before.

    There are a few much less known male only races out there and there are other female only races out there too. I'm sure I read that men can enter the 10k Race for Life.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    There is a male equivalent - the Race For Moore - http://bobbymoorefund.cancerresearchuk.org/

    But for some reason, the Race for Life gets more publicity. I once told a woman who approached me for sponsorship for her RfL effort that due to the perceived inequality in the publicity for both events that I wouldn't sponsor anyone taking part but would be happy to make a separate donation to any Cancer charity. I had abuse through facebook, text messages and one or two forums that mutual friends use.

    Trying to guilt-trip someone in to a donation or sponsorship is pretty low but they never see it that way.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think the reason race for life is exclusively women is a combination of 'just because thats how it is' and also the fear that men would take over and make it into a serious athletic event. Basically that it's a nice event as it is, there's a real sense of 'girl power' and to let men take part might ruin that.

    I'm not sure if I agree or not. Very much on the fence. I don't think anyone has the right to make you feel bad for not giving to charity though, that's just self-entitled shittiness.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I know an office full of women who wore fake taches for movember - its not "strictly" men only, its just most women can't grow facial hair. If it was just women's cancers I could kind of understand, but as it is I think its unfair.

    Just out of interest, are there many trans events of a similar nature? I totally get why people want to celebrate the difference between the genders (when its something gender spesific), but why do we still need to be so gender exclusive in this day and age?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    There is a male equivalent - the Race For Moore - http://bobbymoorefund.cancerresearchuk.org/

    If you read the site it doesn't mention the Race for Moore because it was discontinued after the second year, there was no real reason for it because on its second year it actually got as many as the race for life did in its second year. :(
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    So what about the people who ask for sponsorship to walk Machu Picchu? I didn't give the person who asked me a straight no, I asked her if she would sponsor me when I went on holiday as well. She was not happy.

    I asked someone for money to cycle the length of Vietnam recently, and he basically said this (jokingly, admittedly). It's not as if I picked the country at random. I do live here. Anyway, a quick reminder that I sponsored him a pound a mile for a half marathon and therefore he owes me about £1300 was enough to get a donation out of him. :D One of the other people on the ride was really pissed off though, when someone popped up on Facebook having raised twice as much money as her for......shaving his head. But I think because I live in an exotic location compared to all the people I was asking for donations, they kinda saw it as them paying for me to go on holiday in a way that they wouldn't have if I'd said I was doing Lands End to John O'Groats, for example.

    It can certainly be dodgy though. Round about the same time that we were preparing for the bike ride, we read about a group of motorcyclists doing something similar (albeit shorter). They raised about $25,000 for the event, and about half of that was going on their fucking expenses, which suggests they didn't even pay for their own motorbike hire or hotels. So they genuinely were getting their sponsors to pay for a holiday All of our donations went to charity, because we paid our own expenses. I don't mind someone doing a challenge in an interesting location as long as they're not asking you to fund their trip in any way.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Race for Life is a women only event as it's about sisterly solidarity. So what? Run another event ifyou don't like it.

    As for Fiend, she gave the person a target ofthree hours for a half marathon. If someone can't do a halfmarathon inthree hours they've not tried hard enough. Why should they be sponsored anyway?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    . They raised about $25,000 for the event, and about half of that was going on their fucking expenses, which suggests they didn't even pay for their own motorbike hire or hotels. So they genuinely were getting their sponsors to pay for a holiday All of our donations went to charity, because we paid our own expenses. I don't mind someone doing a challenge in an interesting location as long as they're not asking you to fund their trip in any way.

    This really pisses me off. When I set up my Just Giving page, it asks something about are the charity paying your expenses / is some of the sponsorship going towards your expenses? I explained to Mencap that the events I'm doing, I'm sorting out the transport, etc. myself. Unfortunately, the event I got through a charity place, I can't do now. :(

    I have been told by a friend of mine that I'll get another £5 off him (I gave him £10 for his swim thing and he gave me £5) if I do complete my 12 in 12.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Ah right, snuggles I missed your original point. Guilt tripping for sponsorship is in no form acceptable.

    Just to clarify my original point (after having discussed this with several people last night) is that humans are different, so we should recognise those differences and allow for differentiation, and that doing so does not necessarily equal discrimination. There is a fine line and obviously it should not be crossed, but embracing human differences should be a positive notion, not negative.

    I think that the idea of RfL as a female only event is that many of the female participants would choose not to run it were it open to men too. So my next question is, if it were open to men too, would the amount of male entrants balance out the women who choose not to run because of its non-gender specifity?

    I'm running the Race for Life this year. It's my fourth time, having first done it in the Tesco's team years ago with my friend who'd just lost her mum to cancer. I continue because I like the atmosphere- including the sobbing at the beginning! I'm only doing a 5k, but am determined to beat my time of last year and do it in under 30. Currently i'm jogging/brisk walking at 7m a kilometre, so need to push myself and improve otherwise Fiend won't give me her sponsor money!
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