Mina Guli completes epic 7 Desert marathon challenge on World Water Day

Mina Guli collage

Mina Guli completes epic 7 Desert marathon challenge on World Water Day

• Water advocate runs final marathon in Mojave Desert, USA, on World Water Day (Tuesday 22nd March, 2016)
• Total challenge covered 1,690 kilometres, across seven deserts, on seven continents in just seven weeks
• Water pledges from people around the world save over 100 million litres of water during the challenge

Water advocate, Mina Guli, celebrated World Water Day in style today by finishing her gruelling challenge to run 40 marathons, across seven of the world’sdriest deserts in just seven weeks to raise awareness aboutthe global water crisis.

Mina, founder and CEO of water conservation charity, Thirst, ran a total of 210 kilometres through the Mojave Desert and Death Valley in the final leg of her monstrous feat of endurance. Before this, her challenge had taken her through through blazing-heat, sub-zero conditions and 8 pairs of trainers as she ranthrough deserts in Spain, Jordan, Antarctica, Australia, South Africa and Chile.

Ranked the number one threat to global prosperity by the World Economic Forum, the extent of the global water crisis is highlighted by the challenge itself. By 2030, global demand for useable water will outstrip supply by 40 per cent, a figure that originally inspired Mina to run the 40 marathons.

Engaging with locals and documenting real stories of water scarcity in each of the countries she passed through, Mina pushed her body and mind to their limits to raise awareness of the issue of global water scarcity that exists in both developed andthird world regions.

Mina’s challengealso encouraged people to take a pledge to save water. From choosing to drink tea over coffee (saving 118 litres of water per cup ) or to eat chicken over beef (saving 2,218 litres of water per 200g of meat ), Mina’s message is that consumers can do small things to save vast amounts of water every day. In all 100 million litres of water have been pledged to be saved by members of the public over the 7-week project – that’s over 40 Olympic sized swimming pools worth of water.

On finishing her challenge, Mina Guli, said: “I don’t really know what to say at this stage! I’m delighted to have finished and know that I can finally stop running but also hopeful that it wasn’t all for nothing.

“Since we started planning the challenge we always knew it would be unbelievably tough but I was always motivated by the fact that my actions would create much needed awareness of water scarcity and hopefully influence people around the world to take action.

“Seven weeks of constant running is bad enough, let alone doing so through seven of the world’s harshest deserts where every day you need to fight against the elements to survive. Having broken my back when I was 22 and being told I would never run again I have had to overcome adversity in my life. I have never let this hold me back and it has only ever helped to drive me forwards – this determination was at its most prevalent during my desert challenge.

“Global water scarcity is the biggest problem facing humanity and it’s not something we should start to remedy in years to come, we need to take action now. During my run I wanted people to make small changes to their everyday lives that could save billions of litres of water – hopefully I was able to influence others by what I put myself through.

“I’m not quite sure what I’ll do now, I’ve got so used to running, sleeping in tents and life on the road that it will be strange adjusting back into normality. I’m hoping I’ll be able to get home, put my feet up and sleep for at least a week but I know that this is only the beginning of what needs to be achieved.”

More on Water Scarcity

By 2025, 1.8 billion people, almost a third of the world’s population, will experience absolute water scarcity. Even during Mina’s run, the World Economic Forum reiterated its stance on water scarcity, identifying it as the number one risk facing humanity over the next decade.

Water usage has had devastating effects across the globe as 650 million people live without water . Only 0.007 per cent of the planet’s water is available to fuel and feed its 6.8 billion people as almost all water is unsafe or unavailable for use . By 2025, 1.8 billion people, almost a third of the world’s population, will experience absolute water scarcity.

On average, 92 per cent of total global water consumption is nearly all used in food production, while only 8 per cent is accounted for by domestic water use, such as drinking, cleaning, washing, and for the production of industrial products such as steel, paper and clothing .

For more information on Mina’s challenge and to pledge your support, visit the Thirst website www.thirstforwater.com/pledge to join the Water Pledge. Follow Thirst on Twitter (@Thirst4Water) and Facebook (Thirst) for unique content from the campaign, or use #Run4Water to join the conversation.

Mina Guli will be available for interviews following the completion of her run (phone and face-to-face in America). If you are interested in securing interview time, please contact the 7 Deserts media team at Thirst@Frankpr.it

The Route:

Run 1 – Tabernas Desert (Spain)|1st– 6th February (240 kilometres)
Run 2 – Arabian Desert (Jordan) | 8th – 14th February (270 kilometres)
Run 3 – Antarctica Polar Desert (Antarctica) | 18th – 23rd February (190 kilometres)
Run 4 – Simpson Desert (Australia) | 26th February – 1st March (270 kilometres)
Run 5 – Richtersveld Desert (South Africa) | 4th – 9th March (270 kilometres)
Run 6 – Atacama Desert (Chile)| 12th – 17th March (240 kilometres)
Run 7 – Mojave Desert (Unites States of America)| 18th – 22nd March (210 kilometres)

For more information and any media enquiries, please contact the team at Frank PR on Thirst@Frankpr.it / 020 7693 6999


About Mina Guli:
Mina Guli is a water advocate, an environmental lawyer and a pioneer athlete. At 22, Mina was told she would never be able to run again after breaking her back but has since completed several ironman events and the daunting Marathon Des Sables, a six-day, 251 km ultra marathon across the Sahara Desert. Mina is a leading figure in efforts to protect the world’s water supplies. In 2010 she was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and in 2011, she was named one of Australia’s “50 for the future”.

About Thirst:
Thirst is a group that promotes saving water by educating young people, dedicated to changing the way the world thinks about, uses & consumes water. Launched on World Water Day in 2012 by Mina Guli, the charity looks to arm companies and individuals with knowledge of the water crisis through education initiatives, unique outreach projects and a large engagement network.

Thirst’s vision is to build a grassroots community of Water Heroes – companies and individuals working together to create a shift in purchasing behaviour, with consumers favouring water-sustainable products.

We would like to thank the following partners for making these runs possible: Thirst, IWC Schaffhausen, 5100 Tibet Spring, ZXU.