Over 2,500 Participants: 11 "Rowing Against Cancer" Charity Regattas in 2024

Over 2,500 Participants: 11 "Rowing Against Cancer" Charity Regattas in 2024

With 11 charity regattas in just four months, the Foundation Living with Cancer ("Leben gegen Krebs"), along with its strong partners, sponsors, and supporters, has ambitious plans for this rowing season. The "Rowing Against Cancer" season kicks off on June 8th in Dresden on the Elbe River and concludes on October 6th in Offenbach am Main. In between, there are hundreds of training sessions for novice rowing teams and nine more regattas—all with the aim of improving the quality of life for people with cancer. Specifically, the proceeds will benefit projects in facilities located in the regions of each event.

In addition to the established regatta locations in Mainz (July 7th), Kiel (July 13th), Essen, and Heidelberg (both on September 7th), Hamburg (September 8th), Lübeck (September 21st), and Berlin (October 5th—first time at Kleiner Wannsee), this year's charity regatta will also debut in Munich (July 28th) and return to Halle an der Saale (September 1st) after a one-year hiatus.

The successful series of events organized by the Foundation aims to encourage people to make a positive impact on the lives of those affected by cancer through sport, fun, and genuine team spirit. Dr. Thomas Bellut, an avid rower at the Mainzer Ruderverein 1878 e.V. and the new chairman of the Foundation Living with Cancer since fall 2023, looks forward to the new season with optimism: "It's very important to me to have a positive influence on the lives of people with cancer. Our charity regattas not only raise funds for the foundation's work but also mobilize communal experiences and solidarity, which brings hope to those affected. But our work doesn't end with the events. We continuously strive to improve the quality of life for cancer patients, whether through funding exercise projects, providing emotional support through course offerings, or supporting research projects in cancer treatment. As chairman of this foundation and as a rower, I am proud to be part of a team that is passionately committed to this important cause."

Each event involves a regional oncology facility, rowing clubs, and the Foundation Living with Cancer. This collaboration gives each regatta its own unique flair. For Kiel, Maja Darmstadt, the Vice Chairman of the Association of Kiel School Rowing Clubs, explains: "The well-functioning collaboration of all Kiel rowing clubs is noteworthy. But I am particularly delighted by the unwavering commitment of the student rowers in all areas, whether it's training teams, providing boats, or volunteering on regatta day itself. Every year, new young people dedicate themselves tirelessly to helping people with illness, gaining new experiences, and building self-confidence."

Heidelberg is one of the most traditional venues for the charity regatta, held on the Neckar River and against the backdrop of the magnificent Heidelberg Castle. "In Heidelberg, thanks to the involvement of the Foundation Living with Cancer, we can treat patients with cancer better than routine allows," reports Professor Dr. Joachim Wiskemann, Head of the "Oncological Sport and Exercise Therapy" working group at the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT). "We also have the opportunity to develop and test new and innovative concepts that can ideally improve the care of oncological patients sustainably."

"It's an honor for me, as a world champion rower, to serve as an ambassador for such an important and meaningful cause," conveys Oliver Zeidler to us from his preparations for the World Rowing Cup in Varese, Italy, sending his greetings for the season's kick-off. "The work of the Foundation Living with Cancer is invaluable, and I am grateful to be a part of it. Although my preparations for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris do not allow me to participate in the events in person, I sincerely hope they will be a great success. I look forward to returning to Paris and being there in person."

As the responsible project manager of the Foundation Living with Cancer, Oliver Bettzieche is equally enthusiastic about all regatta locations. As Chairman of Regatta Munich e.V., he is naturally proud of the premiere at the home Olympic regatta course in Munich Oberschleißheim as part of the Euro Masters Regatta on Sunday, July 28th, 2024: "I am very excited that we are finally rowing against cancer in Munich. Charity team building at its best. Together with the Klinikum rechts der Isar of the Technical University of Munich—embedded in the large framework of the Euro Masters Regatta—and with the support of the wonderful Munich rowing clubs. This will be a very special event for all participants and all Munich visitors."

Registrations for the first regattas in Dresden, Mainz, Kiel, and Munich are already open via the Foundation's registration portal at https://start.rudern-gegen-krebs.de. The remaining locations will follow in the coming weeks.

Rowing clubs interested in hosting a charity regatta with the Foundation Living with Cancer can contact the foundation at info@stiftung-leben-mit-krebs.de. For 2025 and beyond, the Foundation Living with Cancer aims to steadily expand the network of regatta locations nationwide. Additionally, the sport of rowing benefits from the opportunity to attract new, enthusiastic rowers to its clubs.

Sponsors and supporters interested in getting involved for the 2024 locations and beyond can contact the Foundation for information on sponsorship opportunities.

Photo Credit: Gerd-Dietmar Hufnagel 

Back to blog