Momentum – it’s what these runs are all about. As I run, I want to create a feeling of community, a feeling that more and more people are running beside me around the world, that each one of us is joining together to make a change.

Mina Guli found her vehicle for community mobilisation in one of the most unlikely of places – running.

Mina never considered herself an athlete. In fact, it wasn’t until a poolside accident saw Mina’s doctors telling her she’d never run again that she saw running as something more than physical activity. Her determination to defy those limitations resulted in her swimming and cycling and eventually – running.

Running became the activity that underlined Mina’s determination and motivation to tackle the impossible. Marrying running with her passion for addressing the global water crisis came naturally. Here’s where it’s taken her:

Mina Guli, with kids from Thirst Water Education

Thirst for Water

Thirst, which launched 2012,  is a grassroots education and innovation organisation focused on raising awareness about the water crisis amongst the next generation.

Thirst recently celebrated it’s 500,000th graduate from its education programs, collaborates with over 400 schools, has over 900 qualified volunteers to teach its programs, had 200,000 students participate in its innovation competitions, operates through 3 offices in 28 cities, and is endorsed by the Chinese Government.

Mina Guli Running across a desert in South Africa

The 7 Deserts Run

A world first - this involved me running 40 marathons across seven deserts on seven continents in just seven weeks. All for one reason – water.  Why 40 marathons?  To represent the 40% shortfall in the supply of water which is forecast by 2030.  

It was an epic and incredible adventure. I discovered the sheer enormity of the water problem that we are facing, through stories told by the people we met along the way. I'm now working to tell their stories to the rest of the world.

Mina Guli Running Down a Dry Riverbed in Australia

The 6 River Run

In support of raising awareness about Global Goal 6 (water), starting on World Water Day (22 March 2017), I ran down six of the world’s great rivers, on six continents in just six weeks.

This expedition consisted of 40 marathons in 40 days to highlight the water crisis, and to showcase how our consumer behaviour links us to some of the major water issues in the world – even those not on our own doorsteps.


100 Marathons in 100 Days


Starting at the New York City Marathon on the 4th November 2018 and ending 100 marathons around the world later, #RunningDry is a call to each of us to save water and to join together to change the way that we all use, consume and think about water. After 62 marathons in 62 days, Mina ran so hard she broke her leg… But that didn’t stop the #RunningDry movement - it made it stronger.

World Water Day 2019

Photograph: Kelvin Trautman

Photograph: Kelvin Trautman


this world water day is close to my heart…

The theme is ‘leave no one behind’. Water for all: whoever you are, wherever you are, water is your human right.

We want to show how we are all connected. The act of running or walking for water shows that you care about the issue. And we know that when people step up to run for water that they think about the issues and discuss the campaign with their friends.

The UN has asked us to act for World Water Day. How? By gathering people together to share ideas and make them grow. That’s why, this World Water Day, we’re asking you to gather a group of friends and go for a group run. Leave no one behind! If we all unite together to raise awareness of the global water crisis, we can make a difference.

Don’t forget to post your pics on social media on Friday 22nd March 2019, using the hashtags #RunningDry and #WorldWaterDay.

conversation starters:

Share one of these infographics, or choose from our water saving share pack.

UN Water has officially featured #RunningDry for World Water Day. Let’s get out there this Friday and log those miles to help spread the message!

Whoever you are, wherever you are, water is your human right. Access to water underpins public health and is therefore critical to sustainable development and a stable and prosperous world. This #WorldWaterDay, we must leave no one behind.

Read my story about one inspiring organisation making change here. And let’s focus our efforts on leaving no one behind. Together, we can make a difference.

Share these graphics to get everyone involved this #Worldwaterday!


100 Water Heroes

View the full blog of 100 Water Heroes Mina met with on her 100 Marathons in 100 Days quest.