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The Indigenous Marathon Project (IMP) was established in 2009 by world marathon champion, Rob de Castella, and in 2010 four Indigenous Australians created history as the first to run in the world’s biggest marathon – the New York City Marathon.

The IMP has grown significantly with 132 graduates finishing a major international marathon, including New York, Boston, Tokyo, London, Paris and Berlin, and completing a compulsory education in health and leadership.

The continual growth and expansion of the IMP led to the establishment of the IMF in 2015 which covers four core programs:

  • The Indigenous Marathon Project (IMP)
  • Indigenous Communities for Activity and Nutrition (I-CAN)
  • FrontRunners (a Graduate specific program)
  • IMF Running and Walking Australia (IMF RAW)

Running and physical activity underpin all IMF programs and we are committed to providing social, inclusive, and fun environments for people to adopt active and healthy lifestyles.

Indigenous Marathon Project

Each year a group of 12 Indigenous Australians are selected to train for the New York City Marathon with just six months of training.



IMF Running and Walking (IMF RAW) has grown from the successful Deadly Fun Run series and the voluntary work that IMP Graduates are contributing to their communities, to pass forward the positive mental, emotional and physical benefits that IMP experience has provided to them.


IMF’s FrontRunners program provides the opportunity for IMP Graduates to access grants to establish running and fitness groups, establish their own business, and/or undertake personal, professional, and career development courses.

I-CAN Activity & Nutrition

I-CAN encourages school attendance and addresses childhood obesity and inactivity by installing running tracks and fitness equipment in primary schools or in Indigenous community parks.

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of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians on whose land we live, work, run and play and we respect their Elders, culture, lore and values. We value Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Island culture as a national treasure, and embrace it as a vital and rich part of the
Australian identity.