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Picture of Izmir Kassam running

Getting to the finish line

10-year-old Izmir Kassam from Calgary was deeply saddened by the devastating news of major earthquakes that struck southern Türkiye and Northern Syria the day of his 10th birthday.  

Following the devastating earthquakes, more than 57,000 people lost their lives, and the damage to buildings, roads and infrastructure has left millions in need of humanitarian assistance.

Inspired to make a difference, Izmir decided to launch a donation campaign by running for a cause. He decided to run 10 kilometers 10 times (that's 100 kilometers!), with the aim of raising $25,000 for the Humanitarian Coalition and its members.

"We are so glad that Izmir chose the Humanitarian Coalition for his fundraising initiative. We are all in awe of his dedication and commitment" commented Catherine Dufour, our Stewardship specialist at the Humanitarian Coalition.  

Izmir's personal connection to Türkiye, being named after the city of Izmir, and his general desire to help people further motivated him to take action. In fact, it is not his first run for a cause! Last summer, Izmir ran a half-marathon to support women and girls in Afghanistan.  

If, like us, you are inspired by Izmir's story, you can make a donation to his fundraiser and help him get to the finish line! He is already at 65% of his objective. 

  • Watch Izmir and his parents talk about his initiative: 

  • Read more about Izmir's initiative: 

Give to Izmir’s fundraiser

Izmir will be completing his 10th run of 10K on Saturday, June 10 from 9:30 to 11:30 AM at the Glenmore Athletic Park in Calgary. Get your tickets to attend the run here!