Written by

February 22, 2020

This year a local fixture on the Cape running calendar will have a special blue brigade cheering on the runners who will be participating in the Slave Route Challenge on Sunday 23 February 2020.

Volunteers and staff from Islamic Relief will be manning the 23rd water station in Oranjezicht making sure that everyone is suitably hydrated, while flying the flag high for the aid agency that most recently received an Ubuntu award from the SA government for outstanding Social Responsibility.

“Islamic Relief is more than just aid, we are creating awareness about our impact on the earth, contributing the gender-based violence conversation and promoting healthy engagements for the everyday South African. Many of our volunteers and staff are avid runners so being a part of this sporting scene is a natural fit for us, says Press Manager Rezaa Kasu.

Powered by Brimstone, the race which is celebrating its 10th anniversary caters for the runner, walker, and novice.

The volunteers have been readying themselves to be at the station at the crack of dawn in the hopes of making a bright blue impression. There is a trophy for the best water station and the team have their eye on that prize.

“We are extremely excited to showcase the Islamic Relief we know and love to others because they get to see how fulfilling it is to give back – whether its runners today or the needy tomorrow, says lead volunteer on the event Nazlee Jacobs.

“The City welcomes the race that shines a light on South Africa’s history while at the same time providing thousands of runners the opportunity to experience another quality event in Africa’s leading events destination,” says Executive Mayor Dan Plato.

The added appeal of this event is that it takes ownership of our past, changes the narrative of our heritage and transforms it into a legacy for future generations. The route starts in front of the City Hall in Darling Street, right in front of the Balcony where the late President Nelson Mandela made his first speech after his release from Victor Verster Prison. Visit www.slaveroute.co.za for the route maps.

Islamic Relief is well known for utilising sport as a game changer in the charity sector. It is the birthplace of the popular Lace up for Change movement and over the years has hosted boat races, running events, mountain hikes and more – both locally and internationally.

“Sport remains an incredible vehicle for unity and change, says Head of Fundraising Abdul Aleem Gamza.

“Next month we are pleased to be sending one of our fundraisers and volunteers, Samiullah and Ammaar, off to Spain as they crowdfund for water projects in Mali as part of a cycling challenge. They will represent us alongside 25 other participants from around the world. Why? Because water remains a critical challenge for the 2,800 people in the two villages we have selected to assist.”

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