Huawei Technologies (Kenya) has renewed its commitment to sponsor the annual Safaricom Marathon in Lewa by giving a cheque of 100,000 USD (approximately Sh10 Million) in support of the marathon.
For the last eight years, Huawei has invested over 800,000 USD (Sh77.6m) in the marathon, becoming one of the top corporate sponsors and contributing significantly to efforts to conserve wildlife, reduce human/wildlife conflict and provide clean water and education to communities in and around Lewa Conservancy.
Speaking while receiving the cheque, Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said the contribution towards this year’s edition of the marathon would fund continuing efforts to fight poaching, while enriching the lives of communities in and around Lewa.
“Their contribution to this cause has helped make the Safaricom Marathon one of the greatest races in the world. With the funds collected, we will be able to provide security for the wildlife and fund economic activities in and around Lewa,” said Collymore.
On his part, Huawei CEO Dean Yu expressed the company’s commitment to sponsoring the event, which has been listed as one of the top 10 ‘must do’ marathons in the world.
“Supporting the Safaricom Marathon in Lewa is in line with our company objectives, as we have identified environment conservation “as a key pillar in our corporate social responsibility strategy; for this reason we feel that we have a responsibility to support this noble cause and pledge to continue supporting it,” Yu said.
This year’s race is scheduled to take place on June 27 at the Lewa conservancy in Isiolo County. The marathon is in its 16th year and will see 1,400 runners from 20 different countries around the world participate in the half and full marathons. The event is organised annually by Tusk Trust and is supported by Safaricom, as well as a host of other sponsors.
Since its inception, the event has raised over USD 4.9 million (Sh475m), funds that have been used to alleviate poverty, reduce conflict, and improve education and livelihoods in and around the conservancy, which is rich in biodiversity and home to various endangered species including the black rhino.
The Safaricom Marathon in Lewa will have three categories: 5km children’s fun race (10 to 14-year-olds and 15 to 17-year-olds), the 21km half marathon that will include team races, and the 42km full marathon.
The marathon attracts participants from all over the globe, who come to compete for a good cause. A unique event that not only tests your limits, but also gives you an opportunity to enjoy a real African Safari! One of the 10 “must do” marathons in the world.
What began as a simple idea back in 2000 has now grown from 180 runners in 2000 raising $50,000 to 1,200 runners in 2014 raising $725,000. In addition to this, since the inaugural marathon in 2000, US$4.9m has been raised. The unique marathon is exceptional in many ways as it combines an unusual fund-raising initiative with one of Kenya’s greatest sporting passions running.
The race has stimulated and provided substantial financial help to a wide range of beneficiaries throughout Kenya, with a primary focus on northern Kenya.
Funds raised during the race are used to support conservation activities in Lewa Conservancy, Northern Rangelands Trust and Mt. Kenya Trust, among others.
Courtesy of standardmedia.co.ke