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Marathon Man: Rotary Day of Service's Secret 3k

The three-kilometre walk/run event for equality is slated to take place virtually on March 2.
Ecole Notre Dame TS3k
Ecole Notre Dame Des Vallees participate in the Secret 3k.

In 2021/2022 Rotary International established the Rotary Days of Service. These days are to address challenges facing the community and provide meaningful and participatory experiences for Rotary, Rotaract, Interact and EarlyAct members.

Rotary District 5360 and 5370 have decided to embrace the theme of “Empowering Women and Girls” and participate in the Secret 3k.

The Secret 3k was inspired by the Marathon of Afghanistan which started in 2015 when the first Afghan women to complete a marathon, ran the 42.2kms in Bamyan, Afghanistan, in the foothills of the Hindu Kush mountains. While she was training, she had to endure verbal abuse and rocks being thrown at her but this did not stop her from achieving her goal.

Last October, the Taliban took control of Afghanistan and the oppression of women and girls has returned. The Secret 3k allows us to run or walk for freedom and gender equality.

The Secret 3K run/walk, is an event held annually during International Women’s Week to promote equality.

It started in 2018, in 10 cities across Canada and has grown every year. Supported by the Running Room, the Secret 3k has raised funds for incredible groups such as the Marathon of Afghanistan, Girl Guides of Canada and Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan.

Last year we had over 2,000 women, men, girls and boys from around the world participate. 

In total we had 23 countries involved including Canada, U.S., UK, Australia, Germany, Italy, Spain, Ireland, Scotland, Mexico, Netherlands, Austria, Singapore, Pakistan, Sweden, Greece, Poland, Indonesia, New Zealand, Japan and Afghanistan.

We even had several schools participate, during the day, with 3k events.

One of those schools was Ecole Notre Dame des Vallees in Cochrane. This school has supported the event every year and the 3k run/walk takes students, parents and teachers on a route along the beautiful Bow River.

This year the Secret 3k is being held on Wednesday, March 2, and, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it will continue as a totally virtual event.

So, what does 3k look like? Well, it’s 3,750 steps or a 4-minute walk. Pick a route and head out on March 2.

Everyone is invited to participate so please head over to and sign up today.

Whether you are a Rotarian or not we can all run/walk 3k for freedom and equality.

© 2022 Martin Parnell

[email protected]

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