Crista Cullen MBE, Olympic Gold medallist from Team GB’s hockey team at Rio 2016, has combined her Kenyan roots with her passion for sport to launch ‘Together for Water’ – an empowering event on a collective mission to accumulate enough miles to virtually travel the 6,000 mile distance between the UK and Kenya.

The challenge, launched by Cullen’s Tofauti Foundation, invites individuals, teams (of up to six people) and corporate groups to shake off lockdown and be part of a movement to travel the distance – through any means possible: walk, wheel, run, cycle, row, swim – and bring awareness and fundraising to create water security for rural communities in Africa.

A dedicated platform has been created for those who take part to track their progress, either manually or via an integration with Strava. Key features include: an advanced leaderboard; distance views to see virtual accumulative distances as people progress; virtual location information; custom milestones; and a newsfeed. It can be accessed across multiple devices and from anywhere in the world.

Following a summer of sport with the Euro 2020s and Tokyo Olympics 2020, the ‘Together for Water’ event takes place from 5th September – 4th October, 2021, building up to the London Marathon on 3rd October, in which Cullen herself will be competing.

“We wanted to come up with something that is fun, inspiring, empowering and totally accessible to everyone, regardless of their abilities, to rally people together in a collective effort and get active to help a greater cause,” said Cullen. “I’m a firm believer that the challenges facing Africa can only be tackled through an approach that unites. By getting people moving in the UK and beyond, we can help bring accessible, sustainable water infrastructures closer to the communities who need them, giving them not just water, but time; time to farm the land and feed their families, go to school, to improve their lives.”    

Research shows that four in 10 British adults are so sedentary they risk their long-term health. Around 25% are almost completely inactive, meaning they exert themselves for less than 30 minutes a week. At the same time, 785 million people worldwide lack regular access to water infrastructure and must fetch water for themselves and their families, travelling long distances every day on foot with only as much as they can carry on their back.

“We want to change the paradigm by helping people take their first step into healthier habits and at the same time helping to reduce the number of people who don’t have access to a basic drinking water system,” added Cullen. “The more miles we can cover together, the less they will have to – together, we can go further.”

The event is aligned with Tofauti’s belief that harnessing the power of collective energy and shared beliefs can make a difference. Tofauti was founded by Cullen, who grew up in Kenya. While attending school in the UK, she fell in love with sport, working up to become an elite level hockey player and ultimately winning Olympic Gold at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics as part of Team GB. Tofauti, which translates from Swahili to ‘difference’, brings these two worlds together – her belief in harnessing the power of teamwork and a deep understanding of the challenges facing Africa’s animal and human populations.

To find out more and get involved in the ‘Together for Water’ challenge, please visit: