Dan Perkins, an eleven-time Ironman competitor and pastor of Twin Oaks Church in San Jose, CA, qualified for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship and will be competing to raise funds for Compassion International, the world's largest Christian child development and sponsorship organization.
Between now and the day of the race on September 11, 2011, Dan, 51, plans to raise $25,000 for Team Compassion and the children the organization serves.
“Triathlon is a wonderful sport that teaches discipline, endurance and values, but it can become a selfish sport where the athlete can easily become self-absorbed,” said Perkins. “After taking a trip to Togo, Africa, two years ago with a group from my church and visiting dozens of children we have sponsored through Compassion, I knew I had to do something more with the Ironman competition. Team Compassion gives me the opportunity to do just that.”
The Ironman 70.3 World Championship, being held this year at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nev., is exactly half the distance of the full Ironman competition, including a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile bike ride and a 13.1-mile run. Dan qualified for the World Championships during the Ironman 70.3 competition in Boise, Idaho, on June 9.
Earlier this year, Dan raised more than $11,000 for Compassion’s medical assistance fund prior to participating in the Ironman St. George race on May 7. He had hoped to qualify for the Ford Ironman World Championships in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, as he had done before, but as each race is different, so are the outcomes. Dan learned a greater lesson that day as physical setbacks found him walking toward the finish remembering it wasn't about his needs but rather those of the children for whom he was racing.
“It is an honor to have an athlete of Dan’s caliber compete for the cause of children being released from poverty in developing countries,” said Mark Hanlon, senior vice president, USA, of Compassion International. “Come September, all of us here at Compassion will be eagerly cheering him on as he races towards the finish line.”
Compassion International is the world’s largest Christian child development organization that permanently releases children from poverty. Founded in 1952, Compassion successfully tackles global poverty one child at a time, serving more than 1.2 million children in 26 of the world’s poorest countries. Recognizing that poverty is more than a lack of money, Compassion works through local churches to holistically address the individual physical, economic, educational and spiritual needs of children - enabling them to thrive, not just survive. Compassion has been awarded ten consecutive, four-star ratings by Charity Navigator, America’s largest charity evaluator.