Blood Runner is Lazios answer to a blood donor crisis. Now in its fourth year, the event starts on the Piazzale del Gianicolo at 09.00 on Sunday 9 October, kicking off with a 300 m corsa delle goccioline for children aged 4-10. The main race then follows a 10 km route, mainly around Villa Pamphili. There is also a non-competitive walk of 2.5 km for the stamina-challenged. Blood Runner aims to inform and encourage people to donate blood and to stress the ongoing problem of blood shortages in the region. The organisers are not only relying on publicity generated by the runners; they are also setting up information stands at the start/finish line for members of the public. The event is also an information campaign to dispel false fears and silly prejudices, according to the organisers. According to Lazios health secretary, Augusto Battaglia, the regions blood shortage is nothing less than a genuine emergency. Currently relying on support from other parts of the country, especially the north, Lazio needs another 35,000 units of blood to be self-sufficient.
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