21st Berliner Wasserbetriebe 5 x 5 km TEAM-Relay from 11 until 13 August 2021

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3.5 tons of athletic clothing collected at the start of the 30th real,- BERLIN MARATHON for Bethel

For the first time, Bethel partnered up with the BERLIN MARATHON – “Accomplishing community—our common goal“!


Friedrich von Bodelschwingh transformed the bible phrase “Gather the pieces left over, let us not waste a bit“ into the philosophy of a movement that for many decades has been collecting seemingly worthless items for the Bethel Clothing Drive (near Bielefeld). For one, it helps make it clear that little things can be of value too, and for the other, the handicapped people who sort and prepare the donated clothing for resale thus develop a sense of self-confidence and of playing an active role in society.

This idea was given new life at the impressive setting of the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON in 2003 in Berlin, thanks to Race Director Horst Milde and his active Starting Team with Werner Scuda and Roland Winkler. Together we took advantage of the opportunity to unite the excellent international reputations of the Bodelschwingh Institute Bethel and the real,-BERLIN-MARATHON in one event, thus aiding the support and integration of handicapped people. Together we demonstrated that sport can be an excellent integrative forum for breaking down barriers and becoming more open towards one another. Wheelchair racers have naturally been part of the MARATHON for years, and more and more older athletes are participating at the event of the year in Berlin. People with physical or mental handicaps also can and want to demonstrate that they are capable of extraordinary achievements. Together, we can build bridges—also for the many severely handicapped people who are unable to participate in races themselves; each one also has an unknown potential that can be deliberately awakened and developed. “To us, accomplishing community means living community!“ The great success of the Ecumenical Run in May 2003 during the church congress in Berlin was a fantastic start down the common path. The SCC RUNNING team was not only responsible for the entire organisation of the race, but € 1,111.00 was also collected through the 500 participants, which was put to use for movement and sport therapy. Many thanks!

In 2003, the organisers of the 30th real,- BERLIN MARATHON very successfully integrated the clothing drive from Bethel into the event. There were numerous reports about the planned collection event before the race on the internet and in the press, and we received numerous inquiries concerning it, which made us proud and confident that it would be a success. The staff from Bethel returned from the capital with 3.5 tons of used athletic clothing. “Half of the clothing was so good that we could resell it,“ reported Rüdiger Wormsbecher, the head of the clothing drive. The usable clothing is now being sold in the 6 Bethel stores, and the rest of the clothing is being processed for other uses. Our thanks go out to all of the participants of the Inline Skate MARATHON on Saturday and to the runners on Sunday. When the clothing was inspected in Bielefeld, numerous hotel keys were found in the pockets, which have since been returned to Berlin. Bethel and the real,- BERLIN MARATHON accomplish community—a great experience and perspective for the future!

Dr. Lutz Worms
Chief Doctor
Sport Medicine, Movement and Sport Therapy
Email: lutzworms@t-online.de
Tel: 01704557961

For questions or information, please feel free to contact me—or simply visit the homepage of the v. Bodelschwingh Institute Bethel! www.Bethel.de

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