Preparations are in top gear as the inaugural Wangari Maathai Marathon is launched

Preparations for the inaugural Wangari Maathai Marathon set for March 3, 2024, are also complete as organisers revealed impressive registrations with roughly 17 days to go

Speaking during a media briefing inside Karura Forest yesterday, where several sponsors supporting the race were unveiled, the CEO of Wangari Maathai Foundation Njeri Kabeberi said she was impressed with the ongoing preparations and expected a world-class marathon that would start and end at the Karura Forest.

She called on more corporate companies to come on board and support a worthy cause for the benefit of sports and the environment, as she introduced a list of sponsors including NCBA, Getrudes Hospital, and National Drought Management Authority among others.

Already 1000 runners have registered but the organisers are targeting 5,000 participants who will compete in different categories including the 21km race and 10km races for elite runners, and 5 km and 2km for corporates, families, and children.

Kabeberi said that the 2024 edition will mainly be used as a fundraiser for the Wangari Maathai Foundation (WMF) which will cater to the Late Nobel laureate’s legacy.

“This Marathon is part of the Late Wangari Maathai legacy and we want to celebrate what she meant to the world. We will have a closed facility as we have discussed routes and mapped the path following guidelines from Athletics Kenya, Green Masters, and Team Jasho who are integral to this one-day event. We can only host no more than 2,000 people in this compound because again we do not want to compromise on standards and quality of what we are building and protecting. Prize monies will be announced later but so far I want to thank all Corporates who have stood with us in cash and kind even as we speak more support from others,” she stated just a short while after receiving a cheque donation of Sh 2 million from banking partners NCBA.

The Program Manager/Events Coordinator of WMF Irene Tindi her part applauded the efforts of various partners including the Green Belt Movement, Ministry of Environment & Natural Resources, and Wangari Maathai Institute to ensure the project stood tall. ” Such initiatives need concerted efforts and we are happy to associate with like-minded partners to help drive our agenda. At WMF, it is important to look back at our journey and celebrate a hero of whom we exist to amplify her ideas. Our vision therefore really is to have global citizens who act boldly for impact.”

Justice Gachoka Mwaniki who is the Chairman of the Friends of Karura has also weighed in by urging all environment lovers to be a part of the conservation starting with the Marathon.

“We will not be here without the input of the Late Wangari Maathai efforts. It would make a world of greatness if we all embraced her ideas. The foundation continues to keep the fire burning and through this initiative of the Marathon, we will be making headway,” he opined.

With registration slowly wearing out as the Marathon day nears, Nairobi’s green hub is expected to be a buzz of activity with charges being Sh 2,000.

MG Team

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