Since its inception in 2004, the MTN Marathon has nurtured the spirit of charity by connecting and uniting both individuals and corporate companies for causes that make a difference in the lives of numerous communities across the country.
At least 247,000 individuals have participated in the MTN Kampala Marathon since it was first run in 2004 and over the years, multiple companies have also partnered with MTN to achieve a common goal of giving back to the community. Subsequently, the MTN Kampala Marathon has earned its place as the biggest charity-inspired marathon, giving both individuals and corporate companies a platform to give back to the community.
Although it is organized by MTN Uganda and its implementing Partner, the Uganda Athletics Federation (UAF), the success of the Marathon over the years is heavily attributed to both the individuals and corporate companies who participate in the event.
According to Somdev Sen the MTN Uganda Chief Marketing officer, there is a limit to the impact a single company can create.
“As such the marathon was born out of the idea that together we can do more therefore creating it to be a platform where individuals and other corporate organizations could come together to contribute, ideas, solutions and funds that would help address many pressing socio-economic needs across the country,” Somdev says.
Somdev however notes that the real heroes of the Marathon are the individual runners who not only contribute to these noble causes through buying the kits, but also go the extra mile of running the races in pursuit of a positive impact in the communities. This year, up to 25,000 marathon kits are up for sale to the public implying that a quarter a million people from Uganda and neighbouring countries who shall buy the kits with the aim of running this year’s marathon shall be contributing towards the noble cause of saving babies’ lives.
While launching the 2022 edition of the MTN Kampala Marathon, which shall take place on Sunday 20th November 2022 under the theme; “Run for Babies” MTN together with its partners, partners including; Huawei, Stanbic bank, New Vision, Rwenzori, NBS TV and implementing partners from KCCA and UAF committed to joining hands to improve the newborn and maternal health services for four selected facilities across the country.
Huawei, which is sponsoring the MTN Kampala Marathon for the 9th year in a row has this year committed Ugx.280 million shillings towards the MTN Kampala Marathon. Similarly, Stanbic Bank, which is also in its 9th year of sponsoring the Marathon maintains has this year contributed Ugx.170 million towards the Marathon this year.
The company has been participating in the MTN Rwenzori, one of the longest standing partners of the MTN Kampala Marathon has also committed Ugx.75 million towards this year’s marathon while Vision Group, which has also been a partner of the MTN Kampala Marathon since its inception to date will this year, extend media support worth Ugx.150 million towards the Marathon, whose purpose resonates with the company’s corporate social responsibility spirit.
Similarly, first time marathon sponsor, Next Media Services, under NBS Sport will offer media support to a tune of Ugx.500 million towards this year’s MTN Kampala Marathon Dominic Otucet, the President of UAF lauds the MTN Kampala Marathon for the platform that it has provided in terms of identifying world-class athletes as well as using athletics to drive charity.
“We thank MTN for sticking with us for the last 19 years, from 2004 when we had the inaugural MTN Kampala Marathon until now. We at UAF value and cherish this partnership,” Otucet says, “Our partnership with MTN has enabled our good performance in athletics, which has become a golden sport in Uganda. We are happy to be advancing sport while making a positive impact in our communities.”
Proceeds from this year’s Marathon shall be used to upgrade maternal and newborn services in four selected health facilities across the country. The beneficiary health facilities include Kisenyi and Kawaala health facilities in the suburbs of Kampala plus those in Kachumbala (Teso sub- region) and Kabong (Karamoja sub-region).
The MTN Kampala Marathon has since its inception raised over Ushs 4.4 billion through the marathon sponsors’ contributions as well as marathon kit sales to the 247,000 marathon participants who have been buying the kits since 2004 up to date. This money has benefitted several causes such as helping expectant mothers with maternity kits, resettling people displaced by war in northern Uganda, delivering clean water and improving sanitation in communities and schools, and most recently, equipping and improving maternal units in several health facilities across the country.
The MTN Marathon pledges to continue playing its role in connecting and uniting Ugandans and fellow corporate citizens to causes that make a difference in the lives of thousands if not millions across the country.