RUN UNITED 2022: Virtual Marathon

For five years, United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s Run United team of 300+ runners has participated in the Detroit Free Press Marathon and other local running events. Together, we’ve raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to support United Way’s work to build communities of stable households and thriving children. 

Though most in-person events were cancelled in 2020, our commitment to supporting our community through running and fundraising has continued through the Run United Virtual Marathon. 

The event

Let’s run a marathon together—virtually—to support children and families in our community. 

Starting with United Way’s 2021-22 Campaign Kickoff in September, runners and walkers will commit to logging at least 25 miles on their own. Then, we’ll all complete the final 1.2 miles together with a virtual “race” on Oct. 17—the date of the Detroit Free Press Marathon. 

Funds raised through the Run United Virtual Marathon will go to support students return to in-person learning as well as continue to close the Digital Divide. Participants will also be encouraged to engage their friends and family to raise funds and virtually cheer them on as they log their miles and complete their marathon.

This year, the event's top fundraiser will win the GRAND PRIZE of a 16 Ticket Suite at Keyworth Stadium to see the Detroit City Football Club take on the California United Strikers FC on October 30th, 2021!  Thanks to our friends at COMAU for generously donating this wonderful experience!


 When:  Complete your 25 miles between Sept. 15 and the 1.2-mile virtual event on Oct. 17. 

Who:  Open to all ages and abilities. You are welcome to complete your miles in whatever way works best for you—walking or running!


  • Aug. 8: Registration opens and fundraising and activities begin on OneCause

  • Sept. 1: Register before this date to guarantee you receive your shirt and swag before Sept. 15

  • Sept. 4: Run United T-shirt and swag is mailed

  • Sept. 15: Virtual marathon begins 

  • Sept. 15-Oct 16: Complete 25 miles (or more) running or walking on your own. 

  • Oct. 17: 1.2 mile celebration run or walk  

How to participate:  

  1. Sign up for the Run United Virtual Marathon on OneCause and create your profile with a photo, fundraising/miles goals and why you’re running with us. Be sure to select a team with your coworkers, if applicable.

    1. Complete your miles however you’d like—all in one day or one mile at a time; running or walking; in your neighborhood or on a treadmill; solo or with your dog, kids or spouse. Whatever fits your schedule and preference! 

    2. Log your miles using OneCause, or using the Strava app. 

    3. Throughout the month, post your photos or screenshots from your runs along with your mileage total in OneCause. You can also share your posts on social media using the hashtag #RunUnited2021 

    4. Watch for challenges and contests for chances to win bragging rights or prizes, etc. 

    5. Fundraise with your friends and family 

    6. Finish your last 1.2 miles with your Run United teammates on Oct. 17 

    7. Celebrate!