Some world class athletes are supporting the virtual run that Aberdeen’s Myles Edwards has set up to support the charity he co-founded to help underprivileged children in Kenya.
The Gathimba Edwards Foundation has carried out massive amounts of work in recent years through a series of remarkable projects which have transformed lives.
But the Covid-19 pandemic has seen many fundraising events cancelled. In addition, the five staff employed by the Foundation in Kenya are confined to their homes, which has compounded the difficulties being experienced.
But Edwards, the former Scottish 1500m champion, has come up with an idea to inspire runners from all corners of the planet to help out.
He said: “I have set up our first GEF Globe Run as a way for runners from all over the world to unite during the crisis.
“Our first in a series of GEF Globe Runs will be a virtual ‘door-to-door’ 5K and each entrant will receive a unique GEF Globe Run Kenya flag medal designed by my friend Jonathan Moniatis.
“Entries are a £10 minimum donation and with each entry we are able to provide one of our families in Kenya with four days of food and essential items during the Covid-19 situation.
“The runs must be completed between Friday April 17 and Monday April 20.
“All runs must be done alone and in line with each country’s government’s social distancing regulations or guidelines.
“All runs must be 5K/ 3.1 miles and start/ finish as close to your house as possible.
“We are asking that, in the interest of sporting values, runners choose a route which does not have significant elevation loss.
“Runners will have to send evidence that they have completed the run by April 21 and results will be posted on our website as soon as possible after that.
“A unique GEF Globe Run Kenyan flag will be posted to those who take part as soon as it is safe to do so.”
Edwards is encouraged by the level of interest the idea has generated since it was launched on Wednesday.
He said: “It has been really good. Eilish McColgan shared our social media post and I’ll be getting touch to ask if she might do it.
“The top-ranked Danish marathon runner, Thijs Nijhuis, who I met in Kenya last year, has also signed up.
“But we want it to be open to everyone.
“We chose 5K as the distance because it’s more manageable for a lot of people. We are also keen for folk to walk if that’s what they would prefer.
“If it all goes well, the thinking is to have a few other virtual runs.
“The next might be a 10K then, after that, possibly a half marathon.
“But that will depend on government advice over how long we are allowed to be exercising outdoors.”
Entries can be made by visiting the GEF website at gathimbaedwardsfoundation.org