From the North Pole to the South Pole and then back north again, all the way to Gardno in Poland: The tracker’s final count showed a solid 34,635 kilometres! That is precisely the distance that 2,500 FIEGE employees across the whole of Europe had covered during the first instalment of RUN FIEGE RUN, raising 77,471 euros in donations for a good cause. The funds will be distributed in equal parts to the Single Mothers House Foundation in Poland, Joshuas Engelreich in Germany, Trentino Tree Agreement in Italy, Életfa Környezetvédő Szövetség in Hungary, and to Boeselager Stiftung Osteuropahilfe e.V., which is currently focusing on aid for Ukraine.
Whether for a walk, a trip in a wheelchair or a jog around the block – the only important thing was that as many people as possible kept moving during the three days on this second weekend in May and clocked every metre in an app. An international team of ten FIEGE junior recruits from four European countries had come up with the idea while attending a CPD programme and ultimately brought the project to life. “It was quite the challenge”, says Hubert Jekiel, Area Manager at FIEGE for Central Eastern Europe. “We all have different roles and come from different countries, are a Team Leader in Operations or a Project Assistant to the senior management. We all worked on this one project that we created from scratch without any previous experience.”
Racing over hurdles before racing for charity
Before the idea became reality, multiple hurdles had to be overcome. For example, organising the cross-border transfer of the donations, making sure the app would be available in different countries and most importantly, collecting the donations.
Martin Rademaker, Executive Board Member of the FIEGE Group and this year’s patron of RUN FIEGE RUN, explains: “I was very excited when the plans were first presented to me and I am impressed how the team has managed to put together an event that unites the entire FIEGE Group. The 2,528 participants alone are an outstanding result. On top of that, the fact that almost 35,000 kilometers were moved and more than 77,000 euros were donated is truly fantastic. With how much commitment and passion our talents have mastered this task, makes me on the one hand incredibly proud and on the other hand demands enormous respect – so hats off to all those involved.”
The right idea at the right time
Co-organiser André Stark, Project Manager at FIEGE Industry & Tires, says looking back: “It was really totally crazy – initially we never thought that our idea would be so well received.” It seems that, after so many events had been cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they had the right concept at the right time and place, so Stark. “It was probably perfect timing to initiate this kind of event, which combines physical activity by each and every one of us with a team effort from within the Fiege Group as well as donations for a good cause.”
In the end, a charity run was staged which had never been organised in the 150 years of FIEGE’s history. For each kilometre that was covered, the FIEGE Group donated over EUR 2.20 – as it turned out, people had walked the equivalent distance from the North Pole to the South Pole and back to Poland again for a good cause. Looks like RUN FIEGE RUN hit the ground running!