Mina Guli to begin 6 River Run on World Water Day to cover 6 Continents in 6 Weeks

By Ashley Glenn

The world is having a water crisis, and Las Vegas is no stranger to the issue of droughts. Conserving and cleaning water is a huge issue, so on World Water day, March 22, Australian Mina Guli will begin her 6 River Run at the Springs Reserve. Guli is a water advocate who will be running a marathon a day around Las Vegas, on the Las Vegas Strip, past Lake Mead and around The Grand Canyon March 22-26.

Guli, water advocate and founder of Thirst, an organization dedicated to raising awareness about the world’s water scarcity crisis, and Tara Lundy, head of program development at LifeStraw, will run the first mile with Guli. It will begin at 9 a.m. at Springs Preserve: 333 S. Valley View Blvd. Run starts at the Water Utility Installation Tunnel.  Guli chose Las Vegas to begin her global initiative because of its commendable work on managing water challenges – Nevada’s overall conservation achievements resulted in a per capita water use reduction of 37 percent since 2002, during a time when its population grew by half a million people.

After Las Vegas, Guli will run along six rivers on six continents in six weeks, 40 marathons in 40 days, totaling 1,048 miles. She will hydrate from the rivers she is running adjacent to using LifeStraw personal water filtration products. School children will accompany Guli on the first mile of the run.

“I grew up in Australia through ten years of drought,” Guli said. “I always thought I was a water saver… And what I discovered back in 2011 was that 95 percent of the water we use every day is used actually used outside the home.”

Guli said that the water we do not use directly is used for a variety of things that we use, buy and consume. Products such as shoes or dresses, she gave as an example, can cost more water than what the average person consumes in order to produce it. After finding this out, Guli founded Thirst, her organization which promotes awareness towards the world’s water scarcity crisis.

“I looked around and did some surveys and I found that 80 percent of people also don’t know this,” Guli said. “I thought, imagine what could happen if I told people what would be the impact.”

Finding that most people changed their consumer habits after realizing the impact of losing water, Guli created Thirst in hopes of pushing world-wide water conservation. Now Guli hopes her run will bring more awareness here in Las Vegas as she makes it her number one stop on her 6 River Run.

Guli had come to Las Vegas last year after finishing her runs and was surprised to find that Las Vegas was a hub for water technology innovation and water use efficiency. In fact, Las Vegas has reduced its’ water consumption by 37 percent since 2002 despite the population growing by half a million people. For these reasons, Guli chose to kick off her 6 River Run for the city’s commendable feats.

“That was remarkable to me because it’s an incredible story of resilience and willingness to understand a limited resource and use it efficiently,” Guli said. “I’m also inspired by this whole idea of technology-based solutions.”

Technology-based solutions is part of the reason Guli will be utilizing technology by LifeStraw, a line that produces water filtration products, during her runs. Guli will hydrate from each of the rivers she is running adjacent to using LifeStraw products.

“LifeStraw is an interesting product because it enables you to go out into the wilderness to explore and extend your reach beyond the water that you can carry,” Guli said. “I’m excited about the ability to go and explore using products like LifeStraw.”

Despite not being a runner herself, Guli has been training for this round-the-world trip marathon extensively. She will be running 40 marathons in 40 days to complete a total of 1,048 miles. And during her travels, which will include places such as the Amazon and the Nile, Guli will be bringing along a flag which she will have people sign. The flag is a water conservation pledge and at the end of her run Guli will be presenting it to the United Nations to show as an embodied petition that the world is united behind saving water and raising awareness.

“I’m excited about Vegas because it’s about understanding something that I had complete misconceptions about,” Guli said. “When you think one thing and find out it’s something completely different, that’s exciting.”

To show support for Mina during her 6 River Run, follow her on  Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. To find out more about Thirst, visit www.thirstforwater.org.

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