Monday, 26 November 2012 02:30
By caribarena news
Antigua St. John's - Come December 2, the Sandals Foundation will stage its third annual Trans-Antigua Half Marathon (5K) walk/run charity event.
This is in collaboration with Canadian single leg amputee world record holder Rick Ball and Antigua & Barbuda’s single leg amputee, Paralympic sprinting sensation Jamol Pilgrim. The charity target is US$5,000.
The two athletes, again headlining this year’s event, are looking to not only showcase their skills as runners, but will also take time out to meet and offer words of inspiration to children at schools across the twin-island state.
On Sunday Canadian Rick Ball arrived in Antigua to a VIP welcome. He joined the fundraising activity one year after its inception. Ball said he is looking forward to yet another successful year for the program, as he promised not only to deliver his best on the day of the event, but also to promote the program with continued vigor and excitement.
He joined fellow athlete Jamol Pilgrim in encouraging Antiguans and Barbudans to come out and support the worthy cause. “If Jamol and I can do it, you can do it. So come on out and support us on this great venture. Our motto is never to give up. We all have our challenges in life and we can overcome them if we put our minds to it,” Ball said.
Public Relations Manager for Sandals Grande Antigua Chantal Antoine explained that this year the event would look into adding a 10K walk/run and a half-marathon to the existing 5k event in order to give participants variety in challenge. “This project that we are embarking upon is really going to be giving back to the local community and the children of Antigua & Barbuda,” Antoine said.
She told Caribarena that the proceeds from this year’s fundraising event, which is also taking place within the resort through various dinners and auctions, would go towards the completion of the Cedar Grove Primary School Library. “It is a great opportunity for us to reach out to those guests who understand what we do and have been with us for a number of years.
They are very keen on helping the Foundation and the projects that we are involved in. Over the last couple of weeks we have been aggressively approaching them and they have donated very generously,” the PR Manager said with reference to the dinners held on behalf of the charity’s present focus. An auction is expected to take place during the course of this week with Olympic tokens brought in by Rick Ball.
So far, the foundation has provided some of the much-needed materials including books to complete the library. All that remains are benches and other finishing touches to make it a “complete center for the students to use comfortably. The proceeds from this fundraising event will go educational projects on the island,” Antoine said, adding that Sandals Grande Antigua is looking to have talks with the Ministry of Education to see how the program could be extended to benefit teachers through training or other avenues.
This year the route for the walk/run has been altered due to logistical issues. But the distance remains the same, having been moved from Dickenson Bay to the St Johns area.
Registration stands at EC$25 per participant. Proceeds go directly to the Foundation, and moreso to the project at hand. All registration takes place at Kennedy’s Liquor Store on Market Street.