Canada’s Andre De Grasse is not only known for being quick on his feet, but also for working to empower youth through the Andre De Grasse Family Foundation. Last year, Canada’s fastest man co-authored a children’s picture book titled RACE WITH ME! to inspire youth through his story. And now, kids across the country can join the Olympic sprinter in an eight-week running challenge designed to encourage young Canadians to get moving.
Last year, thousands of kids across Canada participated in the first-ever Race With Me! challenge. This powerful movement helped fuel the Olympic spirit, propelling De Grasse to Olympic gold in the 200m in Tokyo. The Race with Me! challenge raised over $25,000 for Kids Help Phone and made a difference in the lives of many families.
The challenge was created by the 15-year-old Jesse Briscoe of Montreal, Que. After his sports clubs were cancelled during the pandemic, the teenager grew tired of sitting at home and playing video games. Briscoe was inspired by the Olympic champion and his dedication to encouraging young Canadians, so he contacted De Grasse’s management team, and the RACE WITH ME! virtual challenge came to fruition. Briscoe says the challenge has inspired him and his whole family to get out and run or exercise.
How does the challenge work?
The challenge started on May 1 and continues until June 25. During that time, Canadian kids can run 400m at their local track or measure it out on a sidewalk, road, park or other green space. Children and parents are then encouraged to record their times and videos from their races and upload them to www.racewithme.ca, where they will find leaderboards, prizing and other interactive content.
Throughout the challenge, De Grasse and his other Olympic-bound teammates will be sharing tips and words of encouragement through the challenge’s social channels and on the website. Registration is free, and the first 1,000 participants to sign up will receive a free challenge T-shirt. Families may also donate to the challenge, with the proceeds going to youth mental health charities, such as the Kids Help Phone, through the Andre De Grasse Family Foundation.