Run2Heal Official Press Release



Plans to Raise $1M for Global Child Abuse Charity, Help For Children, While Engaging The Nation In Important Dialogue to Break The Silence

Press Contact:
Judy Klym
The Wakeman Agency
212-500-5953, ext. 114

NEW YORK, March 12, 2018:  Former American Ninja Warrior contestant and ultra-endurance athlete Christian Griffith is running across the country to engage in conversations about child abuse and raise money for Help For Children, a global nonprofit charity. This 3,000 mile conversation is the first phase of a movement, Run2Heal, designed to take away the shame and secrecy that most child abuse survivors carry.  His epic run will begin at Riverside Park in New York City at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, March 19, 2018 and continue across the country, culminating in San Francisco on August 22. Christian plans to run 30 miles a day, an ultra-marathon distance, five days a week for five months.

Run2Heal will provide a platform for survivors to break the silence and stigma that surrounds talking about child abuse and amplify an open discussion of this critical aspect of protecting children. People will have an opportunity to run alongside Christian to show support, speak out, and tell their stories, letting the world know that it is not taboo to talk about abuse. The goal is to exponentially increase awareness and raise $1 million to prevent and treat child abuse worldwide.

A survivor of sexual abuse that he experienced in his early teens, Christian is dedicated to empowering others to break their silence and seek treatment. “It took me more than 30 years to come to grips with the sexual abuse I experienced and realize that the only way out for those who suffer this kind of trauma is treatment. And the only way to stop this abuse is to get people talking about it—LOUDLY!”

Christian Griffith is a renowned endurance athlete and ultra-runner who has completed more than 100 marathon runs, traversing volcanoes, deserts, jungles and swamps all over the world. He was a finisher on the History Channel’s reality series “The Selection: Special Operations Experiment” and appeared on NBC’s “American Ninja Warrior,” among other accomplishments. 

“My sexual abuse does not define me, it fuels me,” Christian stated. “I am not a victim, I’m a fighter.”

According to Renée Skolaski, Executive Director and CEO of Help for Children, “As Help For Children marks our 20th anniversary of making the world a safer place for children, we are proud to partner with Christian as he devotes his incredible strength to helping survivors heal, step-by-step for 3,000 miles. Linking this incredible endurance feat with overcoming the trauma of childhood abuse through Run2Heal sends a powerful message to the world.”

Established in 1998, Help for Children has grown from a single fundraising event in NYC to a global foundation that operates in 13 cities in 7 countries. HFC has just one overriding mission: the prevention and treatment of child abuse. Over the past 20 years, the organization has distributed more than $51 million in grants to organizations that protect and heal children.

The scope of child abuse is truly heartbreaking and the need for help is staggering. Worldwide, an estimated 40 million children are subjected to abuse each year, with nearly a quarter of all adults reporting that they suffered physical abuse as a child.  In the United States alone, there are over 3.3 million reports of child abuse and neglect made each year, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1 in 4 U.S. children experience some form of child abuse in their lifetimes.

“In addition, since children are often too young, too scared or too ashamed to tell anyone about it, abuse can easily be hidden from view and these reports may actually underestimate the true occurrence,” explained Renée Skolaski. “This is why an effort such as Run2Heal that helps to destigmatize speaking out about abuse is so crucial to reduce the suffering of innocent children, as well as repercussions well into adulthood.”

Christian Griffith added, “The confusing thoughts and feelings of guilt around past experiences bring on a lifetime of shame, anger, poor choices, and a lack of self-worth,” he said. “I am spreading the message that acknowledging the abuse and its effects, speaking out, and seeking treatment is critical for healing—which all survivors deserve.”

The route Run2Heal will take Christian across New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, and California. People can make their voices heard and get involved in this fight against child abuse in these ways:

  • Participate in a Run2Heal 5K in each of the destination cities—New York, Chicago, Denver, and San Francisco
  • Meet, run, and speak out with Christian along the way
  • Follow his training blog and run tracker
  • Make a donation to Run2Heal to support the work of Help for Children at

To learn more about Run2Heal, click here.

About Help For Children

Help For Children (HFC), a not-for-profit established in 1998, is a global foundation supported by the alternative asset management industry. With the support of Hedge Fund Cares and Private Equity Cares, HFC provides grants to the most effective and efficient child abuse prevention and treatment interventions in seven countries, making the world a safer place for children. For more information, visit


Help For Children's Run2Heal Transcontinental Run
To Commence March 2018

Maureen S. Angliss at

New York, NY, February 14, 2018

In celebration of our 20th anniversary, Help For Children (HFC) is thrilled to be working once more with Christian Griffith, an ultra-endurance athlete and child abuse survivor running 3000 miles this spring to prevent and treat child abuse. The transcontinental “Run2Heal” will commence on March 19th, 2018 in New York City, passing through Chicago and Denver and culminating in San Francisco. Mr. Griffith hopes the run will provide a platform to for survivors to break the silence around child abuse, and opportunities for supporters to run with him, donate, and amplify Mr. Griffith’s message.

Mr. Griffith is a renowned endurance athlete and “ultrarunner” who has completed over a hundred ultra-marathons in addition to other impressive endurance feats. After speaking out about his own experience with abuse in his early teens, Mr. Griffith has worked to empower other survivors of childhood abuse to break their silence and seek help. His goal is to end the stigma around childhood abuse, and to show survivors that speaking out can be the first step in their healing journey:

“I’m going to talk about it. Loudly. I am spreading the message of treatment - the only way out… Because nobody talks about it, I packaged up my own personal experiences of abuse… for over 30 years, hoping ‘out of sight, out of mind.’”
— Christian Griffith, Ultrarunner

Help For Children hopes to celebrate our 20th anniversary by raising $1 million in support of our work to prevent and treat child abuse. HFC is a global foundation supported by the finance community that provides grants to effective and efficient child abuse interventions in seven countries and 6 cities throughout the United States. Through the generous support of our donors, we have distributed $50 million in grants over the past twenty years.

To follow along with Mr. Griffith, check out his training blog on the Run2Heal website ( The run will be live-tracked once it begins. For more information about HFC and how to support the Run2Heal, visit the run website or the HFC website at, or contact Abigail MacMillan at 212-991-9600 x347 /

About Help For Children

Help For Children (HFC), established in 1998 as Hedge Funds Care, is a global foundation supported by the alternative asset management industry.  HFC provides grants to the most effective and efficient child abuse prevention and treatment interventions in seven counties, making the world a safer place for children.  For more information, visit