HOUSTON, Texas — When the World Transplant Games were canceled because of the ongoing pandemic, the Harris County – Houston Sports Authority created a way to bring the world together virtually through the 5K AnyWay.
The virtual event is designed to unit transplant recipients, donors, families, health care workers and supporters from around the world to raise awareness for transplantation.
The 5K AnyWay could be a 3.1 mile or 5 km race between May 28 and June 4, 2021. It could be walking, running, swimming, rowing, dribbling a basketball, playing a round of golf.
“If we think big, then we have the potential to leave a legacy that no one could have imagined, said Harris County – Houston Sports Authority CEO Janis Burke. “We’re going forward to be impactful no matter what’s happening. It doesn’t matter that we have this global pandemic. What matters is that we pushed forward and we had an impact which is the whole purpose of the games in the first place.”
Registration is now open.
“This virtual platform will create a lasting legacy by reaching out to thousands of transplant recipients and potential donors to be engaged in physical activity and our worldwide community,” World Transplant Games Federation president Chris Thomas said. “This event is the perfect enhancement to our current programs raising awareness of the need for more donors and for all recipients to engage in healthy and active living.”
The World Games would have drawn 3,000-plus participants to Houston. The goal for the 5K AnyWay is 12,000 participants which would equate to more than enough miles with the combined 5Ks to circle the globe virtually.
The cost is $25 per person by registering at wtg2021.com
Next May, everyone will come together virtually to complete the 5K.
After finishing the 5K next spring, log the results, then watch the combined program in the interactive map, which will feature fun facts on the cities and countries along the virtual route. Participants are encouraged to compete and have fun while sharing pictures of the adventure to help spread the word about the importance of transplant donation.
In addition to the fastest competitor in a variety of age/gender/discipline groups, awards will also go to Best Dressed, Most Creative AnyWay, Most Engaged (via social media), Best Individual and Best Team Fundraisers and more.
The event culminates in an exclamation point to a unique week – The Around the World AnyWay Celebration with a Cultural Night and taking Anyway to another level.
The star-studded finale will include pieces of a closing ceremony and highlight the stories of the participants and their countries.
For more information, visit WTG2021.com or follow on Facebook: @WTG2021; @WorldTransplantGamesFederation; and @OfficialWorldTransplantGames.