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23rd July 2018

The London Charity Marathon in Makeni Puts Sierra Leone on Global Tourism Map!

By a press release (21/06/18)

A marathon organised by London-based charity will help tourism to Sierra Leone and will raise funds for some of the world’s poorest children.


Street Child’s Seventh Annual Sierra Leone Marathon raised £150,000 pounds sterling to fund access to education and support. Britons were among 97 international runners who took to the roads of the Northern City of Makeni alongside some 500 locals, in temperatures of up to 30C and humidity of 98 per cent. (Photo: Marathon runners in Makeni).

British lady Jess Cotton, 26, of Romford, was first overseas woman home, in 3hrs 53mins. She raised more than £22,000 with colleagues at City Insurance Firm Tokio Marine Kiln.

"I wasn’t expecting to win. I’m chuffed. The scenery was amazing but no one warned us about the hills. The kids came up to me when I was having a panic attack. I was on my own and it was a bit bleak, but the kids ran from the side of the road and ran with me," she noted.

Ebola and a fall in commodity prices wiped 20 per cent from Sierra Leone’s GDP in 2015 and 2016. Tourism is seen as key to rebuilding the economy.

Tom Dannatt, Chief Executive of Street Child, said: "We’re one of Sierra Leone’s main draws for tourism. We take people to see our work but I think everyone leaves loving Sierra Leone." Through the 1,000 school projects, Street Child aims to raise £10 million over five years to give 100,000 children a chance to learn."

Local Charlie Usman won the men’s race for the second year running in 2hrs 39mins. The first British man was Matthew Geleta of Cambridge, in 3hrs 20 mins. Countdown presenter and Street Child patron Nick Hewer said: "It is incredibly important that organisations like Street Child - it’s not the only one - actually try to make a difference in Sierra Leone."

Courtesy: The Calabash Newspaper


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