Bodyslam lead singer, and mega charity runner Artiwara “Toon” Kongmalai, has expressed gratitude for the support and donations his Foundation received from Isaan residents at the end of the two day running event to assist small public hospitals in the north-east.
Toon, other Thai celebrities, local north-eastern identities and leading officials, ran a staged 187 kilometre route from Nong Khai to Khon Kaen on Saturday and Sunday.
In 2017 Toon completed his epic south-north run from Betong in Yala to Mae Sai in Chiang Rai – a journey of 2,215 kilometres. The run not only raised well over 1 billion dollars for some public Thai hospitals, it also catapulted the popular singer into special status as an energetic 40 year old philanthropist using his love for running to inspire fellow Thais.
“What is more important than money is that I want to see everybody doing exercise. When we have good health, we do not need to go to hospital.”
Donations for the weekend’s run, the first in a events planned around Thailand this year, has already raised 42 million baht. The money is earmarked to purchase medical equipment for eight hospitals in the north-eastern provinces. Toon says the donations from the weekend’s run “exceeded his expectations” and proved the format that will roll-out in other provinces throughout the year.