Saturday, June 1, 2019

Episode 9: Peace Corps Running Stories Part 2- Brendon Hahns Thomas, Katie Long, Ashley Ndir & Heather Deverna

Episode 9: Peace Corps Running Stories Part 2-  Each Peace Corps story journey presents a unique 10-15 minute vignettes of exploration and service; running stories from rural rain forests to elite marathons, each Peace Corps volunteer takes us along and explains what it's like to be immersed in another culture, as both a PC volunteer and a runner. These inspiring stories showcase both what running brings to their host community, as well as what they brought back with them from these experiences! 

Brendon Hahns Thomas discusses training for the “Great Wall Marathon” in NW China, the challenges and joys of living near the Gobi desert.  He also touches on his continued work abroad, and particpating / fostering the start of local running groups in Thailand as well as Cambodia.  Brendon has had ongoing success in his trail and ultra running career, in part build with the fortitude of those long training runs in the Chinese plateu!

Cambodian Running Club discussed:
Further Thailand Running Resources:

Katie Long takes us to Central America, from Honduras to Panama, and explains how it led her to her current career and way of seeing the world.  She also explains Peace Corps Response, a short term service for PC returnees and a bit about how it worked.  
Katie in Honduras (left) with other PCV

Lastly, we follow two volunteers as they explain community & running culture; Ashley Ndir in West African country of Cameroon.
Ashley in Cameroon traditional dress w/ host

Ashley also discusses the empowerment of women and how re-framing sports to be part of their lives and have a profound impact.  She also talks about the rain forest and how it beckons to runners, which was a great means of retreat for her.
The race in Cameroon mentioned in the Podcast: "Race for Hope" or Course de l’espoir
For those in DC area, Ashley also recommends checkout:
Lastly, Heather Deverna spotlights the East African country of Rwanda, as we discover how a tumultuous past can sometimes bring communities together and find how the practice of sport weaves itself into individuals' daily lives and regeneration/ healing of people in surprising ways. Heather also talks about how sport allowed her to connect with youth in her community, and how close she became with that community in the process.  
Please like us on Facebook, and send your favorite runs or races to highlight on the podcast.  
Heather recently back to visit her community in Rwanda

To keep up with future podcasts, projects, episodes and post your own favorite cultural runs: @runninganthropologist. 

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