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VM 2023 : Fit India to Atmanirbhar India

The 2023 Vadodara Marathon is the landmark 10th edition and celebrates the Spirit of Fitness in Atmanirbhar India. The pandemic years taught all of us many lessons, yet the prime one is the need to fit and healthy. Fitness is an individual endeavor and nothing epitomizes self- reliance as running and Vadodara Marathon is the ultimate test of it. This edition of the marathon is a testimony of Self Reliance / Atmanirbharta towards achieving fitness for oneself and for the nation.

Vadodara Marathon has a tradition of organizing unique and exciting pre-events in the lead-up to the Marathon, for each edition. The ever-popular Queens Run was held Friday 2nd December 2022, with over 3,000 girls and women doing Zumba, dancing and running on the roads of Vadodara, a distance of 2.25KM on a pre-determined route, at night. Flagged off at 8PM by H.H. Maharani Radhikaraje Gaekwad, with Hon. Mayor Shri Keyur Rokadia, VM Brand Ambassadors Dr. Bhagwatiben Oza and Mira Erda, senior management of MG Shri Manish Manek and Shri Manish Patel, and other dignitaries; it was a sea of pink as participants wore VM pink T-shirts. The causes highlighted by the Queens Run included voter awareness, women’s empowerment, and safety of Vadodara at night for women.

VM: Fitness during the Pandemic (2020-2022)

During the pandemic and lockdown period of 2020-22, VM planned and conducted various activities, to ensure that families and individual remain fit, and follow a healthy lifestyle even within their homes, as fitness helps keep immunity levels high, thus ensuring good health. Taking care of the community also meant caring for those under-privileged communities who couldn’t take care of themselves, and VM fulfilled its community serve obligations throughout the pandemic enforced lockdown.

VM organized and conducted these events:

  • TCCB: The latest edition of The Cycling Club of Baroda’s “Epreuve de Force: Race to Pavagadh” was held on 7th May 2022, with winners and participants felicitated by VM at the finish point at Pavagadh.
  • Vaho Vishwamitri Walk: A walk was conducted on 1st May 2022, in collaboration with Vaho Vishwamitri, to promote the cause of maintaining the river Vishwamitri as a crucial waterway for the city. The walk had over 750 participants participate and much needed awareness for rivers as a life-source was raised.
  • Milebank Challenge: This was a running-walking challenge where 450 participants, across India, ran/walked daily, setting their own targets, and uploaded their results, for prizes which were awarded to top 3 runners/walkers in various categories.
  • Virtual Marathon: This was held from 4th to 10th January 2021, where 1,440 participants registered and ran/walked in their homes or neighbourhoods, across India and in other countries around the world, with flag off done by Shri Vijaybhai Rupani, then Hon. Chief Minister of Gujarat, in a virtual ceremony.
  • Medical Supplies: VM donated 2 ventilators, one each to SSG Hospital and Gotri Medical Hospital at Vadodara, on 24th September 2020 Global Running Day: VM enthused people to celebrate this event on 3rd June 2020 by running at home; all VM members ran within their homes also.
  • Ambulance Donation: A fully equipped ambulance was donated to SSG Hospital on 23rd May 2020.
  • Meals: VM provided for 8,200 lunches and 8,550 dinners, from 28th March to 30th April 2020, to the homeless and other needy people. Kit Distribution: VM donated 560 kits of grains, from 1st April to 15th April 2020, to needy families, of street dwellers and migrant labourers.
  • VM Connect: Held on 18th February 2020 at Hotel Grand Mercure, with corporate organizations, and all VM sponsors and partners along with NGOs that have partnered with VM. The event had key note address by PadmaShri Dr. MH Mehta on water conservation; a panel discussion on understanding and leveraging CSR for corporates and NGOs; and a presentation on 18 NGOs whose projects require CSR funds. This was followed by direct engagement between the corporates and the NGOs, for various projects to take forward.
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