Last summer was a brilliant one for the Uganda Marathon. It kicked off in the perfect style, with the event becoming Uganda’s biggest public fundraising event…ever! Then, the calendar was full throughout the months with reunions, runs, fundraisers and more. It really did highlight one of the elements that makes the UGM stand out – the community surrounding the event.

And autumn months have been no exception! With lots of news, events and shout-outs, here’s what’s been happening in the UGM Community from October to December 2016…

 

The UGM hosts Barefoot in Business

We were extremely proud during Global Entrepreneur Week to host this special event in November. In partnership with Scrumptious Productions, we held one of five flagship showings of their new production, Barefoot in Business, filmed by award winning director Carol Cooke. This documentary was fascinating, celebrating female entrepreneurship in East Africa while explaining the challenges they face. Following the film, there was also a Q&A session with Carole and a live link up to Uganda to hear from some of the businesswomen featured in the film.

A big thank you to everyone who attended the event, showed such enthusiasm and asked some great questions. It really was a fantastic evening!

If you would like to know more about the Barefoot documentary, you can visit the website here.

 

Yes Stories: A Night of Inspiration – Hosted by the UGM

Andy Miller talks about the Marathon as one of the night’s many inspiring stories

On December 14th, we hosted another event, Yes Stories, in partnership with SayYesMore. It was an evening of inspiring stories from different presenters talking about charity, adventure, the marathon and overall, living life to the full!

Thank you to everyone who joined us for this great evening. It was brilliant to hear so many exciting, thought-provoking stories (with beer!) and see old and new faces alike.

 

A Professional Running Coach joins Masaka Running Club!

November saw professional running coach, Shane Benzie, fly out to Uganda to work directly with Masaka Running Club (the local running club where the UGM is held, which started as a result of the UGM15). The club has been steadily expanding over the last two years, and this marks another important step in their development. Shane worked with all the runners to improve their running technique, and excitingly, trained three of the clubs members in coaching, so they can pass on their knowledge to more runners in Uganda.

Not only did the runners have a fun and an educational time working with Shane, but they now feel more ready for UGM17 than ever!

A big, big thank you to Shane for going out to Uganda to work with the runners. We’ll have more details on his incredible time in Uganda soon!

(Psss….if you’d like the chance to train with Shane yourself, we’re offering a prize draw for a one-on-one session to anyone who signs up to the UGM17 in January!!).

 

Andy Bownds and the Masaka Running Club take on the MTN Marathon!

Talking of the Masaka Running Club, they also travelled to the country’s capital in November, to participate in the MTN Marathon. Our Community Partnership Manager, Andy Bownds went along, and together they participated in the race, which was a day full of laughter and achievement for the team, where several of the club’s runners did very well.

A MASSIVE thank you to our awesome 2016 runners as revenue from your shoe donations in May, mean the club can enter races like these.

 

Turkey Thursday – the team gets in the festive spirit!

On 22nd December, the team tried to make that little bit of difference to homeless people’s Christmas by giving out festive dinners across London! Andy Miller, Andy Bownds, Emily, Henry, Kate, Julia, Gee and Tim all volunteered to cook up a big turkey. They then went out onto the streets of London giving out portions of the turkey, plus: carrots, peas, stuffing and gravy, with a bread roll and slice of Swiss Roll for desert. By driving around London and stopping near tube stations to spot anyone who looked like they might need a meal, the team managed to feed 40 people, bringing smiles to their faces and some uplifting conversations. Well done to everyone involved- doing something that truly sums up the Christmas spirit!

 

Shout-out to the lads who ran the Great South Run for the UGM!

A BIG shout-out to these lads who ran the Great South Run in Portsmouth on October 23rd. Together they covered 10 miles (even though many of them have never run that far before!) and fundraised £100 which will help support one of our charity projects, Youth with a Vision and its aim to provide internships for its students. Thank you, Aaron, Jake, Ethan and especially Joel for organising this – we really appreciate it guys! Amazing efforts! 🙂

 

 

 

Havana Marathon

After returning from the UGM16, some of our runners were so keen to travel and run another marathon together again, they decided to book a marathon in Cuba (there’s a rumour this was booked after a few drinks, but who are we to believe rumours…!? 🙂 ). Well, following their sign up in June, on November 19th, Tom, Mark, Lewis and Marcus crossed the finish line of the Havana Marathon– completing another race in warm temperatures! Well done to everyone involved, you did superb!

 

Shout-out to Becky as she embarks on her Atlantic Endeavour!

In December, Becky (one of our 2016 runners) and three others set out on their epic voyage to row across the Atlantic Ocean for charity. We wish you all the best of luck from the UGM team! We’re sure it will be an amazing, once in a lifetime adventure, and you’ll raise a lot for brilliant causes!

If you would like to learn more about the challenge and the charities they are supporting or even make a donation, visit their website: http://www.atlanticendeavour.com/.

 

Finally…massive, massive congratulations to Henry and Julia!!

We’re thrilled to announce that our Director, Henry, and his girlfriend, Julia (a former UGM runner), got engaged on Christmas day! After meeting at a UGM training run in February ’16, they became friends and got together shortly after the main marathon event in June. Since then, they’ve been inseparable and since Henry made the romantic (and bold) move of proposing in front of her whole family, we’re thrilled to report it was a ‘YES’!

A big congrats to you both from all the team, for what must have made it a very special Christmas. We couldn’t be happier for you both! 🙂

 

Watch this space- upcoming events!

We’ve got a number of event going on throughout January, and we’d love to see you there! We’ll also be covering this in our next edition of the community blog in early February.

  • 11th Jan – Let us wine and dine you! UGM January Social – we want your feedback on the event! If you’d like to join us, let us know in advance so we can organise food and drinks for you- on us!
  • 21st & 22nd Jan – We’re at the Adventure Travel Show in London, Kensington Olympia – if you’re thinking of signing up to UGM17, come and meet the team and ask questions! And if you’re a previous runner, we’d love for you to come and help us out!
  • 26th Jan – Uganda Marathon Launch Event, London – if you’re signed up (or thinking of signing up), this is an excellent opportunity to have some fun, meet the team, meet fellow runners and more!

 

Thanks for taking the time to read our latest community blog. We’ll be back in a month’s time with more updates! In the meantime, we’d love to hear from you if you’ve got news, a story or a shout-out for yourself or someone in the UGM community. Drop us an email at [email protected] Happy New Year everybody!

 

 

 

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