Frequently Asked Questions


How do I apply for the team and what is the selection process?

To be considered for the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team, each interested individual completes the online application. Every application is reviewed individually, with particular focus on personal fundraising goal, reasons for wanting to join the Dana-Farber team, and timeliness of application. Applications from Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge veterans are also evaluated on past fundraising results.

Can I be on the team if I've never run a marathon?

Yes! Many applicants selected to join the Dana-Farber team have never run a marathon before. Dana-Farber receives a limited number of invitational race entries from the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.), and these entries are allotted to selected Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge applicants who are not time-qualified for the Boston Marathon. The B.A.A. requests that invitational race entrants be able to complete the marathon in six hours or less.

What is the deadline for applications?

The application typically becomes available in September, and hundreds of strong applications are received within a few weeks. Due to the postponement of the 2021 Boston Marathon to October 11, the 2022 application process will begin in late fall. Please join our contact list to be notified when the application goes live. Prompt action is strongly recommended, as applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Applicants receive status updates via email.

I have my own entry for the Boston Marathon. May I join the team? How do I sign up?

Absolutely—registered Boston qualifiers and other official entrants are welcome and encouraged to join the team! They play a special role in accelerating Dana-Farber's funding capability in our race to conquer cancer. Qualifiers and others with their own race entries complete the online application, agree to raise $4,000, and receive the team’s great benefits and amenities.

If I don't make the team or the wait list for the upcoming marathon, can I re-apply for another season?

Yes, you may apply once the next season's application process has started. For information on future Dana-Farber teams, please join our contact list. You may also join the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge volunteer crew for the current season.

Can a friend take my place on the team?

If you need to discontinue your participation prior to the cancellation deadline, please contact the office. We will select someone from the current applicant pool if it is still possible to do so at the time that you contact us.

What are the fundraising commitment and fees for the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge?

Please view the Fees and Fundraising Requirements section of the homepage for 2021 requirements and amenities. 2022 requirements and amenities will be announced in late fall.

What fundraising assistance do I receive as a Dana-Farber team member?

All Dana-Farber team members have access to the team website, which allows each runner to personalize an individual web page, send fundraising emails, and manage fundraising progress and records. The Participant Center provides other fundraising materials and training guidance, too.

What benefits do team members receive?

All team members receive the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge’s renowned benefits and amenities!

How much of the money raised by Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge runners goes to the Marathon Challenge beneficiary, the Claudia Adams Barr Program in Innovative Basic Cancer Research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute?

One hundred percent of the funds raised by Dana-Farber team members supports the Claudia Adams Barr Program.

Once I send donor checks in to be deposited, how long will it take for those gifts to show up on my web page and in my fundraising total?

Please allow two weeks for posting, especially during the weeks surrounding marathon weekend. Check your web page regularly and let us know of any questions or concerns following the processing period.

I'm planning a Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge fundraising party or other event to benefit my run. What do I need to do to get started?

Please fill out this Community Fundraising Event form as you begin planning your event or project. Submit this form by email to our office at least four weeks prior to your event or project start date.

What is my fundraising obligation if I join the team and then am not able to train or run on marathon day?

The cancellation deadline for team members will be shared with all accepted runners prior to their registration. You will not be responsible for the fundraising commitment if, after accepting a spot on the team roster, you notify us at in writing by the cancellation deadline. After the deadline has passed, each participant is responsible for raising and/or contributing the basic fundraising commitment by the commitment due date, even if the participant is no longer able to train for and/or run the marathon.

What is Dana-Farber's Tax ID number?

Dana-Farber's Tax ID number is 042263040.

I want to make a gift by check. Who should it be made payable to?

Please make your check payable to "Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge". If a donor makes a check payable to you, please endorse the back of the check and write "payable to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute".

Where do I send my check?

Please send checks to the address below. Be sure to include the name of the runner the gift is supporting, as well as their participant ID number.
Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge
P.O. Box 415601
Boston, MA 02241-5601

Will I receive a tax receipt for my gift?

All gifts made online will receive an email confirmation, which includes tax information. Gifts of $15 or more made by check are acknowledged with a letter. For gifts made by check that are less than $15, the cancelled check will serve as your tax receipt.

What is a matching gift? How do I submit a matching gift?

Many companies offer matching gift programs to encourage their employees’ support of charitable organizations. Contact your company’s human resources department for information about how to have a gift matched, or search for your company to see if it provides matching gifts to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund. Please send notification of your incoming matching gift to us at

I am interested in contributing an appreciated asset. How does that work?

Contributing via stock, IRAs, or securities is an easy and efficient way to make a gift. Learn more and contact us with any questions.

I just made a gift by credit card. What will appear on my bank statement?

Your online transaction will appear on your credit card statement as: DANAFARBERJIMMYFND. If the transaction is pending, you may see PENDINGBB appear, which is normal.

I have a question about giving from my Donor Advised Fund using DAF Direct. Who do I contact?

Follow these instructions to give via DAF Direct. Email our Donor Services team or call 617-632-2903 if you have any further questions. Our team may direct you to speak with your DAF.

Is the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge website secure?

Yes. All information submitted online is subject to the Jimmy Fund Privacy Policy. Please read the Jimmy Fund Privacy Policy before submitting any personal information.

How do I opt out of communications?

If you wish to opt out of receiving fundraising mailings from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund, please call 800-525-4669 or visit If you wish to opt out of email communications, you may also click the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any Jimmy Fund email.

I received a cash gift from a donor who would like tax credit. How should I deposit it?

The Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge office cannot accept cash gifts. Please convert each cash gift into a separate money order and send it in with a donor information form, which can be printed from your Participant Center. This will ensure that the donor is credited on your web page and receives a tax letter.

What training support do I receive?

Veteran marathoner Jack Fultz, winner of the 1976 Boston Marathon, creates our five-month training program, which includes a daily training guide, nutrition tips, mental preparation and other guidance, Boston-area weekend group runs, and many stories from the life of a former professional marathon runner.

Where do I find the training schedule and weekend run information?

Training materials are posted in the My Tools section of your Participant Center, which may be accessed by all registered Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team members.