FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Wedding Photographer Organizes 29-day Run from Dallas to Galveston, Writes Book to Promote Emotional Health Awareness
By Billi London-Gray
DALLAS, Summer 2009 – Innovative wedding photographer Aurora Amaya, the talent behind Amaya Photography.com, is now breaking ground with her legs and letters as well as her lens. The 28-year-old Dallas resident is planning to run from Dallas to Galveston Bay as part of an event to raise awareness about emotional health issues. She has also written a book, Running Out, that chronicles her personal journey to physical and emotional wellness.
Amaya’s event, “Running for Awareness,” will mobilize novices, trained athletes and celebrities to run with her along nearly 300 miles of Texas roadways. Amaya will run every inch of the route from Dallas to Galveston over the course of 29 days, starting October 17 and finishing November 14, 2009.
The purpose of the run is to give participants the opportunity to publicize emotional struggles and seek emotional well-being. Amaya is seeking $100,000 in corporate sponsorship, in addition to celebrity endorsements and national media coverage, in order to put the event and its aim before a nationwide audience.
“I want to take emotional health awareness out of the shadows and put it out in the open, for everyone to talk about,” Amaya said. “In my life I experienced firsthand the damage that can occur when emotional disorders – depression, control, food addiction – are ignored. These are real issues that have the potential to grow into serious problems.”
Having wrestled with weight and emotional health issues since her childhood, Amaya has shed 80 pounds and much emotional baggage through a regimen of nutrition, exercise, counseling and introspection. Running seven days a week under the direction of a holistic health coach and a running coach has refined Amaya’s physical condition. The process of writing her book, Running Out, has refined her emotional condition.
But Amaya’s personal victories are only part of her motivation for undertaking the long-distance run. Taking up the theme of resurrection, Amaya now wants to show others how they can rise from the ashes of mental and physical burn-out.
“Running has been my coping skill, my solace,” Amaya said. “This run from Dallas to Galveston Bay will be a public display of my commitment to encouraging others who are struggling to achieve freedom from their emotional disorders.”
Amaya has stated that she dedicates each day of her training to someone she knows is hurting. As she pursues strength, those around her are inspired to do the same, including her running coach Mike Hummel, who is training for the 2012 London Olympics.
“Aurora is one of the most focused and teachable individuals I’ve ever worked with…which is crazy because this is the first athletic goal she may have ever put her sights on,” Hummel said. “Very rarely are both traits embodied in the same person. She’s going to surprise and motivate thousands. She has surprised and motivated me.”
Amaya invites anyone with an emotional struggle to run with her. Whether a participant wants to run a few steps, a few miles or a few weeks with her, Amaya only requires each runner to wear a “Running for Awareness” T-shirt emblazoned with that runner’s personal struggle.
“That’s the entrance fee: the freedom found in self-disclosure,” said Tommy Dyer, the event coordinator for Running for Awareness.
Recently Amaya sent out a massive e-vite calling all people to join her in an e-party. A creative marketing strategy using all social networking tools. They achieved their goal to get 10,000 people on June 29th to post their status as: www.awarenessrun.wordpress.com.
Her sights on educating the public has already intrigued and grasped the attention of other companies like, Nextgengirls. Nextgengirls is a company specializing in meeting young girls where they are in the time of crisis and providing 8 weeks of educational activities, talks and accountability to help them walk away from a life of anorexia, cutting, self-loathing, etc. Aurora has recently been asked to join the organization as a speaker and source of inspiration for the girls.
August will prove to be a productive media stint for Running for Awareness. Relevant Magazine (http://www.relevantmagazine.com/features-reviews/reject-apathy/17569-in-the-long-run) and NeighborsGo will be featuring Running for Awareness in their August issues. Other magazines and papers they hope to gain approval for posts and who have shown some interest include D Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and The Dallas Observer.
In conjunction with the run, Amaya’s book, Running Out, will be released through Yorkshire Publishing in the fall of 2009. In the book, Amaya not only describes her fight to overcome personal hardships but also offers encouragement to those who struggle with emotional disorders and unhealthy addictions.
About Running for Awareness
Running for Awareness is a free event that will take place from October 17 to November 14, 2009. The 29-day event comprises a nearly 300-mile run from Dallas, Texas, to Kemah, Texas, on Galveston Bay.
Anyone may participate in any leg of the run. There are no required registration forms or entrance fees, but each runner is required to wear a “Running for Awareness” T-shirt labeled with an emotional struggle. T-shirts will be produced by the Dallas-based clothing company Somewear and will be available for online purchase before the event.
Information about the event, corporate and celebrity sponsorship, T-shirt purchases, and route details, as well as Amaya’s blog about her preparation for the trek, can be found at her Website, awarenessrun.wordpress.com.
For interview requests, press packet requests, sponsorship inquiries, or additional information regarding Running for Awareness or the upcoming release of Running Out, please contact Elizabeth Gonzalez with Running for Awareness.
Event Coordinator/Media Relations
P.O. Box 836283
Richardson, TX 75083