Pillars of Sustainability

Who we are?

Vancouver’s only Marathon event is wholly organized by the Vancouver International Marathon Society RUNVAN®, a non-profit, volunteer-run organization. The Society relies on a dedicated group of volunteer Board of Directors and over 4,000 invaluable volunteers with a passion for running, commitment to healthy living, and desire to showcase the beauty of Vancouver, Canada.

Why we do it?


To deliver premiere running events that inspire active lifestyles and invite the world to experience Vancouver.


Be the hub of running in Canada, offering the world’s most memorable experiences.

More than just a race

Vancouver’s only Marathon event has a well-earned, world-class reputation, driving high tourism value for the Province of British Columbia. The event showcases Vancouver, BC, while delivering remarkable experiences for travelers from across the globe. Runners from 65+ countries now annually join.

The event has expanded over the years to includes races for everyone, highlighted by the Marathon, a fast Half Marathon, 8KM race and Kids Run. And some of the key components that are part of the BMO Vancouver Marathon program are distinctively outside of the run itself.

The Society invests in volunteer engagement, which is at core of the organization. Founded by, governed by, and supported by volunteers, the Society remains one of the few non-profits, volunteer-based organizations left in the sector. Nearly 4,000 volunteers annually contribute over 16,000 person hours.

During event week the free three-day Health & Sports Expo features 120+ exhibitors. The Society also organizes a free Street Festival for the general public. We are also very proud of our green message and efforts, helping the event achieve an overall diversion rate of 98%.

In addition to attracting international runners, RUNVAN® is engaged locally, investing in numerous charitable causes and community outreach initiatives. Through our RUN4HOPE program, we’ve helped runners raise over $15 million for charity since 1996. The Society also has a RUNVAN® Development Fund which supports aspiring Elite Athletes and makes sport more accessible to those who may face financial barriers to participating.

Prizes are awarded to neighbourhood groups with awards for best cheer groups and fans. The event encourages engagement of local communities, and features lots of entertainment on course to encourage mass participation from runners and spectators alike.

Vancouver’s only Marathon is more than just a race. The Society brings together diverse groups in a celebration of community, sport, and healthy, active living.

How we do it?

With your support as runners, sponsors and contributors, we’re able to create memorable and safe race experiences. You have told us to build a world-class event, and it is our goal to strive towards this goal while creating a sustainable event.

Economic health is obviously important for long-term event sustainability. RUNVAN® carefully manages revenues and expenses to ensure they are deployed in the most effective and efficient manner. Our volunteer Finance Committee oversees the financial performance of the organization, while our volunteer Board of Directors carries the overall fiduciary responsibility of the organization. Your entry fees are directed back into the race itself.

Source of Funding

  • Participants
  • Sponsorships
  • Expo
  • Other


  • 62% RACE EXPERIENCE – covering traffic management plans and traffic personnel; transit plans and passes; medical and emergency personnel and equipment; volunteer training, shirts, and food; runner shirts, food, medals, bibs, and timing; elite athlete support and prizing; course signs, sound, and entertainment; supplies like toilets, tents, water, safety cones, and course markers; city services like police officers, fire officials, engineering support and sanitation services, to help achieve an overall event waste diversion of 98%
  • 17% OVERHEAD – covering warehousing, technology, insurance, accounting, legal, utilities, and our small events team
  • 14% COMMUNICATION – covering race communications, including signage, trade shows, our website and marketing
  • 7% EXPO – covering the free three-day Health, Sports and Lifestyle Expo.


RUNVAN® will continue to grow the sport of running, to improve health outcomes, to create a spirit of community celebration, to inspire volunteerism, and to share this great running city with others. This inclusive experience is what our founders envisioned and its what we continue to strive for today.