Christina Richter has been a 261 Friend since the very beginning and she now shares with us, what the 261 Friendship has given her back. In this interview she will speak about the first time she heard about 261 Fearless and the life-long friendships she got from it.
Why did you become a 261 Friend?
We have all had our moments in life—those times when we were told we don’t belong. We are too old, too tall, not the right gender, not from the right neighborhood. Kathrine was a hero of mine growing up int he 1970s/1980s. I was afforded the opportunity to work with her in 2009 to bring her to Delaware to speak to a group of young girls who were facing their own moments of exclusion. Kathrine shared the message of" talent is everything—it just needs an opportunity.” By supporting the 261 global movement, you are able to break these barriers of exclusion, and come from a place of abundance and inclusion!
What’s your motivation to support 261 Fearless as a Friend?
The marathon is a metaphor for life—the highs and the lows the triumphs and the moments we want to walk. We cheer each other on not only while running, but throughout our journeys as 261 Fearless friends. It is deeply meaningful experience that you can give the spirituality of running and a community of caring to others around the world. It is a gift that we are seeing during a global pandemic is giving people the ability to stay connected in a world that many feel isolated.
As a 261 Friend, you’re part of a global community. Where are your 261 friends located?
I am lucky that as a member of the 2017 NYC team, and the 2019 Marine Corps team, I have 261 friends from around the world! We start out running together, but those bonds transcend running and I am a richer person for knowing them, and having such diversity in my life.
How is 261 Fearless empowering women through your contribution? Do you see the impact of your friendship?
I am deeply grateful to the 261 Fearless community, as in 2018 I was supported to meet the team in Niagra Falls, and four days before my trip was taking to the hospital with eight blood clots—six in my lungs and two in my neck. I remember saying to the attending physician that I had a big run and had to get home for my trip. Needless to say I was at the beginning of a long journey. My 261 friends jumped into action and one of my teammates even painted a picture for me during my recovery. Once home from the hospital just walking was a chore. I had physicians tell me that running wasn’t in my future. Through all this, my 261 Fearless family never stopped checking on me, and offering encouragement. When I returned to do the Marine Corps 10k with the team in 2019, it was probably the race that meant the most—not because of the time—but because of the gratitude for the journey. Often we don’t return to things as they were, but to see running through a different lens. The impact on me because of these friendships is deep and far reaching. When you join the 261 Fearless Friend program you have the power to change someone’s life.