Running to America inspires a nation

The inspirational 2010 documentary Running to America screened again with week on ABC, showcasing four young Indigenous men and their quest to run the world famous New York Marathon. Since crossing the finish line of the world famous marathon, each of the four young men have gone on to achieve amazing things in their chosen field, whether it be running, Australian rules football, or community engagement. They continue to inspire every athlete that comes into the IMP family, and all have their sights set on one day running another marathon. Charlie Maher, who became the first Indigenous Australian ever to complete the New York Marathon when he crossed the line in a time of 3 hours 30 minutes, has continued with his running. In April 2011 he ran the Boston Marathon, taking 10 minutes off his personal best time, and raising $1500 for a local Alice Springs dialysis unit. Charlie then returned to playing Australian Rules football, but reignited his passion for running late last year. In January this year, Charlie committed to running his third marathon – the Gold Coast Marathon. Last weekend, Charlie crossed the line in front of his IMP family and current squad members. In doing so, he has continued to inspire a nation. Charlie still lives in Alice Springs with his wife Tali and young daughter Frankie. He is expecting his second child in November. Charlie has already admitted that he hasn’t finished marathon running yet, and is currently choosing his next target. Since running New York, Juan Darwin from Maningrida has had a significant impact on his small community. Two athletes have since been selected into IMP – Beth Ali in 2011 and Grace Eather in 2012. Juan recently started work as a physical education teacher at the Maningrida School, and has been working hard to facilitate the Deadly Fun Run Series in the community. Juan hopes to one day train for and complete his second marathon. Joseph Davies from Kununurra has continued his work with Garnduwa in Kununurra, running youth leadership and sports camps to inspire Indigenous children to achieve more than they ever thought possible. Joseph helped to set up a Deadly Fun Run Series in Kununurra in 2012, with the community being represented at the inaugural Deadly Fun Run Championships in Uluru last year. Joseph has continued with his AFL, but hopes to one day run another marathon. He recently became a father to twin girls. Since completing the New York Marathon, Caleb Hart was selecting as part of the Northern Territory Thunder football team, and continues to play AFL at a representative level. Caleb has been assisting on ground in central Australia setting up the SmartStart for Kids I-CAN program in the small community of Amoonguna, just outside Alice Springs. Caleb hopes to one day complete his second marathon. He recently became a father to a baby girl. Running to America will be available on ABC iView for the next month. Copies of the documentary can also be purchased by contacting the IMP office. For more information, email