Talk about commitment to charity – Chris Pinder just went to extreme lengths to raise funds and awareness for U.K.-based group Together For Cinema.
Pinder, who serves as managing director for AV signal transmission provider HDANYWHERE and residential/commercial electronics distributor OneAV, ran the equivalent of six marathons in six days…through the Sahara Desert.
He tackled the grueling Marathon Des Sables and finished the race April 1, placing an amazing 158th out of 1,000+ participants, in an effort to boost donations for Together For Cinema.
With more than £31,000 ($40,000+ in U.S. dollars) already donated on behalf of Pinder’s race, folks can still head to his Go Fund Me page to participate in the charitable endeavor.
Led by founder Ian Morrish, who detailed his work in the custom integration industry and spearheading the organization as a CE Pro Podcast guest, Together For Cinema collaborates with CI suppliers and integration companies to outfit children’s hospices with much-appreciated entertainment spaces.
Every integrator has a handful of manufacturers and distributors they rely on as critical partners in the success of their business. Check out the 2022 Quest for Quality Awards winners!
“I’ve just seen that we smashed through £30,000 pounds raised, and that’s the whole point of why I was running,” Pinder posted in a video from his hotel after finishing the Moroccan race.
“We aimed to raise £25,000, I can’t believe the support you guys have given me … The relief is what you’re overcome with when you’re finished [the marathon], and gratitude that you don’t have to do it again. It’s definitely the toughest foot race on Earth, it was ridiculously hard.”
The Together For Cinema group is already well into its planned seven projects for 2022, having surpassed the 25-theater room milestone last year, and is always seeking generous sponsors for help with equipment and resources. And no, competing in an ultra-marathon in Africa (in 34 hours, 43 minutes and 29 seconds no less) is not a prerequisite to pitch in.
Emotions Run High for Together For Cinema Founder
“I am in awe of what he has achieved,” noted Morrish as he helped welcome back Pinder to the U.K. at Gatwick Airport in what was an emotional return and reuniting with family. As Morrish detailed in a poignant share on social media recently:
“Thank you Chris … My eyes filled with tears when I found out you had finished safe and sound, and my eyes are teary now whilst I write this. What you have achieved is incredible and a lesson and an inspiration to us all. Your determination to complete the course and raise a huge amount of money for a great cause has been amazing and I hold you in the very highest regard,” Morrish stated.
“By supporting Together For Cinema, you will make a difference to the lives of thousands of children and young adults over the coming years. Bringing the cinema experience into their safe place is a great gift and I thank you on behalf of all those that will never know what you have done to help them…
“It’s hard to explain in words how we all feel about what you have achieved, but I know that all of us at ‘Team Pinder’, and the hundreds of extended ‘Team Pinder’ members, supporters and donors, want to thank you for making a difference.”
And even though he was not in Africa for the Marathon Des Sables, Morrish created his own race as a show of support for Pinder.
He documented on Linkedin his “I’m Not Quite Chris Pinder but I’m Giving It a Go” daily bicycle rides he took on Pinder’s run days, a little more inspiration for anyone in the industry to join the Together For Cinema cause if they have not yet. Morrish cycled 184 miles in six days, documenting each day while also providing updates on the fundraising.
Update: as of this writing, the GoFundMe donations have exceeded £34,000.