Victoria, BC (ISN) – The GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon 2012 Times Colonist Charity Pledge Program (CPP) was officially launched today. This is the seventh year that the highly successful program has been adopted by the Marathon and 20 charities will be participating this year.

Since 2006, $792,000 has been raised by the combined charities. The 2012 GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon will be held on Sunday, October 7, 2012.

The charities raise awareness and funds by encouraging individuals to run or walk for their individual causes, and by collecting pledges. The 20 charities are the BC Cancer Foundation, BC Schizophrenia Society – Victoria Branch, Canadian Diabetes Association (Team Diabetes), Canadian Mental Health Association – Victoria Branch, CFAX Santas Anonymous, CHOICES Adoption and Counselling, HepCBC Hepatitis C Education & Prevention Society, KidSport Greater Victoria, Lifetime Networks Victoria, Mount St. Mary Foundation, MS Society of Canada, NEED 2 Suicide Prevention and Support, Pacific Centre Family Services Association, Recreation Integration Victoria, The Arthritis Society (Joints In Motion), The OCTA Collective Society/artsREACH, Threshold Housing Society, USC Canada (Run for Biodiversity), Victoria Brain Injury Society and Victoria Women’s Transition House Society.

“The Times Colonist Charity Pledge Program helps not only the 20 charities involved, by increasing awareness and by raising money, but it gives the participants that have committed to a charity, a reason to get out and train, collect pledges and stay on track with their goal of completing one of the distances,” says Cathy Noel, General Manager, GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon. “It is often as simple as going for a training run or foregoing a coffee, so hopefully the charities will help to motivate the participants and keep them on track. Our goal is to have all participants and volunteers contribute to the CPP in some way.”

“We are extremely delighted to be involved with the Times Colonist Charity Pledge Program,” says Mandy Parker, Executive Director, Mount St. Mary Foundation. “It is our biggest fundraising event and provides us with a platform to engage our constituents, a means for them to participate in something completely different; it promotes health and fitness and enables individuals to raise money for a good cause. To date, we’ve raised over $250,000 and this year we’ve set a lofty goal of $60,000. We encourage everyone to walk, run or pledge in the Charity Pledge Program – just get involved.”

For the second year CPP has a title sponsor, the Times Colonist. “The Times Colonist is pleased to support our community and the 20 charities that will benefit from the Charity Pledge Program this year,” says Shannon Kowalko, Promotions and Community Relations Manager, Times Colonist. “The GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon has developed a unique and powerful fundraising opportunity for organizations to not only raise funds but to also increase awareness. We are truly excited to be a part of this program.”

KidSport Victoria has been involved with CPP for three years. “KidSport Victoria applauds the Victoria Marathon Society, Thrifty Foods, Oak Bay Bicycles and the teams of volunteers, athletes and donors for their ongoing support,” says Patti Hunter, General Manager, KidSport Greater Victoria. “Our goal this year is $30,000. This will go far to help those who live in financially distressed circumstances, ensuring they are enrolled for a season of sport of their choice.”

The 33rd Annual GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon takes place Sunday, October 7th, 2012. In addition to the Marathon there is a Half Marathon, 8K Road Race and Thrifty Foods Kids Run & Marathon. For more details, visit