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261 Club Spotlight: Albania

Get to know the 261 Club Albania and learn more about the fearless women running there.

261 Fearless Club Albania is a social running group for all girls and women, regardless of age, weight, and ability. Our social run is not a race and the group is always in solidarity with the pace of the day. We believe that the more members we have in the group, the more interesting the weekly meetings become.

This group is part of the international 261 Fearless Inc., a non-profit organization founded in 2015 in the United States. It was founded by the pioneering runner, Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to run the Boston Marathon in 1967 officially. The organization's goal is to use running to empower and unite women through running clubs in different countries, educational programs, communication platforms, and activities based on social running.

Although 261 Fearless Club Albania was registered early in 2020, the Tirana running group has existed since 2016 with the first coach being a Peace Corps Volunteer in Albania. through ripples of effect since then, there are now two groups: one group in Tirana (the country’s capital) and one in Rrëshen (northern Albania).

Brunilda is the Albania club leader and a 261 coach for the club in Tirana. Currently in Tirana there is one assistant coach, Dhurata, and a coach candidate in training, Suela.

The group in Rrëshen is led by 261 coach and master coach candidate, Arbërora. There are currently two coach candidates in training ready to join Arbërora, Domenika and Adelina.

There is a third group, in Fier (southern Albania), that is on the process of being revitalized with three coach candidates currently taking the Coach Preparation Program. They are Matilda, Besa, and Anxhela.      

“Ours is a serious group, full of values. I personally appreciate our running day and always say that this is a way to relax for every woman – every woman should do this much and not neglect physical activity for themselves. I value our coach.” - Edlira, 261 Club Albania, Tirana group member.

“This running club has had a special impact on my life. First, I feel very well with all the members of the group and look forward to starting Saturday in a beautiful way. After the run, I feel motivated to start the day with positive energy. I have also noticed that all the group members try not to miss the Saturday meetrun. If I cannot make it on Saturday, I feel like I have wasted the day. The Saturday morning meeting with 261 has helped me feel good emotionally in addition to staying fit physically and mentally.” – Dhurata, 261 club Albania, Tirana group member and assistant coach.  

“261 has affected my life in various ways. Participating in the 261 meetruns has provided me with ongoing motivation and support to achieve my running goals. In the meetruns I have created new social connections, which has improved my social well-being. It has also affected my self confidence and self-esteem. I should also mention how it has improved my physical health, how it has affected my body and mind by reducing stress and helping me learn running techniques. Finally, since I am a coach candidate, I feel a bigger responsibility not just for myself but also for other women who will be part of 261.” – Domenika, 261 club Albania, Rrëshen group member and coach candidate.   


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