Do you want to make history?

This year on November 18th we’re asking all our Instructors to take part in one of the biggest fitness experiences ever: Workout for Water. Workout for Water launches on Saturday 18th November, as part of World Children’s Day, and is the first event within a partnership between Les Mills and UNICEF, called Move The World.

What is Move The World?

Move The World is an exciting humanitarian project whose aim is to drastically improve the quality of life for some of the 2.1 billion people worldwide that don’t have access to clean water.

Earlier this year Les Mills CEO, Philip Mills, and Program Director Rachael Newsham, visited South Sudan with UNICEF. Both Phillip and Rachael were deeply moved by the humanitarian crisis they witnessed, in particular, the drastic water shortages and lack of sanitation facilities. Many civilians had endured terrible suffering, witnessed atrocities and lost loved-ones as a result of a war that had nothing to do with them.

Despite their terrifying reality, Rachael noticed that the children in the camps wanted to play as much as any other children all around the world: “If they were to stray outside these protective walls, these kids could easily be captured by militia,” she says. “But inside they seemed just to be thinking how long can I play with this football until I have to go to lessons? Never mind that they didn’t have shoes, and it was hardly a ball anymore, in those moments when they were running around they were happy.”

Whilst in South Sudan, Rachael visited a schoolyard in one of the United Nation’s protective camps for civilians and taught a Sh’bam class to children of all ages. What got the children really enthusiastic and engaged, however, was ‘Heads, shoulders, knees and toes’!

But children don’t just need games and new footballs, obviously - they need to have their basic needs met too. Like access to clean water.

Why Water?

Think about the water we drink when we’re working out. It nourishes and revitalises us. Now imagine if you couldn’t get that. Or if the only water available was dirty, maybe even infected with the disease.

Clean water is so important. Yet sadly, about every two minutes, a child dies from sickness brought on by unsafe drinking water and poor hygiene and sanitation. Children in countries like South Sudan have to risk their lives every day just to have something to drink. Lack of clean water is particularly challenging for girls, who often walk many long, gruelling hours to fetch supplies. With water closer to home, they are safer and have more time to play and concentrate on their studies.

“Thousands of people take a Les Mills class every single day across one hundred countries,” says Rachael: “We know that if every one of our Instructors ran a Workout for Water class in their clubs on November 18th and received donations from participants for the price of just two or three cups of coffee, we could raise enough funds to potentially build thousands of water pumps. And by funding a water pump, what we are really doing is providing a child with the chance of a future – keeping them healthy and giving them more time to play, spend with family and receive an education.

Get Involved!

Don’t miss out on this ground-breaking charitable event. Getting involved is simple: we will provide you with all the necessary information and tools so that you can turn any (or all!) of your Les Mills classes on 18th November into a Workout for Water class. You’ve already received your toolkit, now go to and register as a fundraiser.

A one-off Workout for Water Release is on its way to you soon, complete with new choreography for you to incorporate into each session. Each Workout for Water is designed to reflect the average daily journey made in search of clean water in East Africa, which we hope will help both you and your participants to connect with the children who’s lives will be transformed by the money raised. It doesn’t take much to have a great impact either: our target for each Workout for Water is just $414 (US), sufficient to provide a water pump that can transform daily living for an entire community.

You can make a difference to the lives of children in South Sudan. Please sign up today!

“The three values of Les Mills,” says Rachael, “are that we are brave, we are one tribe and we want to change the world. Workout for Water makes good on these promises like never before. We’re all going to be brave taking on this new challenge. One tribe doesn’t just mean your own community, but the entire human race, and changing the world begins with taking action in your own backyard. So let’s Workout for Water this November and move the world, not just for ourselves, but our entire human tribe.”

More information: how you can bring Workout for Water to your club this November. Download toolkit

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