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Heart of Dinner Joins the 2023 TCS New York City Marathon as an Official Charity Partner


Read below for more information about Heart of Dinner's inaugural participation in the NYC Marathon as an official charity partner this year: 

We are thrilled to share that Heart of Dinner has become an official charity partner for the 2023 TCS New York City Marathon, the world's most renowned and iconic running event! Our non-profit organization is committed to delivering culturally thoughtful meals, along with handwritten notes and moments of companionship, to homebound and isolated Asian American seniors living in significantly under-resourced communities.

By joining Team Big Hearts, runners will not only find joy in accomplishing their own personal goals, they’ll also find purpose in dedicating their miles to nourishing the Asian American elderly we serve. Our runners will champion our mission and raise a minimum of $5,800 on behalf of Heart of Dinner to address the history-long barriers that place our beloved elderly community at risk. On November 5th, 2023, Team Big Hearts will join over 50,000 runners from around the world for the NYC Marathon, racing through all five boroughs right here in New York City!

We invite runners of all levels to apply for consideration to join our team. By committing your miles to our cause, you can make a positive impact on the world and help us uplift Asian American Elderly faced with inequity. Interested runners can find more information about our mission statement, goals, impact on the Asian American senior community, fundraising requirements and deadlines, eligibility criteria for Team Big Hearts, and application below.

What is Heart of Dinner's impact on the Asian American senior community?

Studies report that nearly one in five New York City residents over the age of 65 live below the federal poverty level. Many homebound seniors living on fixed incomes struggle with the cost of food, leading to hunger throughout our city's significantly under-resourced communities. 

Asian American senior citizens in New York City face larger economic barriers and higher costs of living, with approximately 24 percent of Asian seniors living in poverty compared to 18 percent of all elderly New Yorkers. Studies show that social isolation, inadequate community outreach, and language barriers play a large role in keeping Asian American seniors from receiving critical universal essentials.

Though racism and xenophobia towards Asian Americans has been rampant throughout history, the COVID-19 pandemic led to a surge in racial discrimination towards Asian Americans, with many experiencing harassment and violence. This has intensified the already existing issues of food insecurity and isolation faced by Asian American seniors experiencing physical, social, economic, and emotional vulnerability. Heart of Dinner is contributing to the recommended solutions from public health professionals, physicians, policymakers, and other experts to support equitable food access during national emergencies.

Studies that have also found that social isolation and loneliness among older adults is a significant public health concern, increasing the risk of various physical and mental health conditions, including heart disease, weakened immune response, depression, and anxiety.

Heart of Dinner pioneers solutions that address the long-standing community issues of social isolation and food insecurity with empathy and ensuring that our initiatives are culturally meaningful to the Asian American elderly population that we serve. Our beneficiaries have expressed that Heart of Dinner's work has significantly improved their quality of life with ongoing access to nutritious and culturally meaningful food, and they feel more connected to the community as a result of our mission. An elderly couple, aged 89 and 86, shared their appreciation: "Thank you for caring for us; thank you for bringing us happiness; thank you for giving us something to look forward to each week. You all are our grandchildren. We love you all."

To learn more about the history and origins of the organization along with a video to watch Heart of Dinner at a glance, click here.


What is Heart of Dinner?

Heart of Dinner is a non-profit organization that aims to alleviate food insecurity and isolation among Asian American seniors who are faced with inequities. We curate culturally thoughtful food, package them in hand-illustrated bags, and include handwritten notes of love before hand-delivering them to Elderly at risk of food insecurity and isolation.

What are the benefits and requirements of running with Team Big Hearts? 

Looking for a chance to accomplish your goals while running for a cause and making a positive impact on the world? Consider joining Team Big Hearts, Heart of Dinner's official charity team for the 2023 TCS NYC Marathon, the world's largest marathon in the world and the most competitive to qualify for.

Heart of Dinner evaluates applications based on applicants who have a personal connection and/or passion to further Heart of Dinner's mission, the ability to meet and/or exceed the $5,800 fundraising commitment for runners obtaining a bib through Heart of Dinner, and the ability to safely train for the 26.2 mile race.​



  • An opportunity to raise funds and visibility that help Heart of Dinner carry out its mission to provide hand-delivered care packages of culturally thoughtful nourishment to Asian American seniors faced with inequity and living in severely under-resourced communities.

  • Secure an official race entry to the 2023 TCS New York City Marathon as part of Team Big Hearts (for runners obtaining a bib through Heart of Dinner.)

  • Heart of Dinner will sponsor complimentary virtual training services provided by NYRR Coaching Lab for our runners.

  • A personal fundraising page and fundraising toolkit with ideas to help you achieve your fundraising goal.

  • A race-day cheer squad to encourage you all the way to the finish line!

  • Heart of Dinner running kit that you can use on race day.

  • First invitations to Heart of Dinner's marathon-related events.

  • Dinner in New York City for you and a +1 at a location chosen by Heart of Dinner! 

  • Celebrate with pre- and post-race festivities and get to meet and greet with fellow runners representing Team Big Hearts. 


  • All runners must commit to meet or exceed the minimum fundraising requirement of $5,800 that goes to Heart of Dinner. Runners have until December 5, 2023 to reach their fundraising goal.

  • Runners are responsible for paying their race registration fee directly to the New York Road Runners (NYRR.) The cost is $295 for non-NYRR members, and $225 for NYRR members. All registrations are non-refundable and non-transferable.

  • Participation in the race also requires proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. 

  • Complete our application for consideration by clicking here. Application window closes at 11:59PM EST on Monday, March 20, 2023. (Selected runners for Team Big Hearts will be notified on Monday, April 3, 2023.)

We welcome runners of all levels to apply by filling out our application form by clicking here. Join us in making a difference and adding more meaning to your miles by joining Team Big Hearts for the 2023 NYRR NYC Marathon!

I've read all of the information above and am ready to fill out the application! How do I apply?

How do I stay informed about any updates related to Heart of Dinner's participation as an NYC Marathon charity partner?

Sign up for our newsletter to receive Heart of Dinner marathon-related announcements and updates, including details about joining our cheer squad, poster-decorating gatherings leading up to the race, and more! Click here to be added to our newsletter.

As much as we would love to bring on all of the elderly in our neighborhoods, we have reached our maximum capacity. Please apply for our waiting list and when we are able to expand, we hope to bring on more elderly recipients as soon as our bandwidth and capacity will allow!

How do I include some elders to receive your care packages/meals?

What if I already have my own entry into the 2023 NYC Marathon and am interested in fundraising for Heart of Dinner?

Thank you for your generous consideration and we are grateful for your championing! If you already have your own entry into the 2023 NYC Marathon and would like to raise funds for Heart of Dinner (meaning you are not seeking Guaranteed Entry into the race), please email us at HELLO[AT]HEARTOFDINNER.ORG with the subject line, "Have my own entry into the NYC Marathon + interested in fundraising for Heart of Dinner". We kindly ask that you fundraise $1,800 for Heart of Dinner, and you can set your goal even higher! Please note that though you are not held to a fundraising commitment if you have your own entry, runners who choose to fundraise for Heart of Dinner and raise $3,800 will receive a surprise commemorative gift! 

As much as we would love to bring on all of the elderly in our neighborhoods, we have reached our maximum capacity. Please apply for our waiting list and when we are able to expand, we hope to bring on more elderly recipients as soon as our bandwidth and capacity will allow!

How do I include some elders to receive your care packages/meals?


Help fund Heart Of Dinner’s meals and nourish our community of elders.

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