Khayelitsha are you moving for your health?

Pupil's will take part in the Khayelitsha 10km run and 5km fun run/walk next month.

With this year’s Khayelitsha 10km run and 5km fun run/walk just over four weeks away, planning is in full swing with some exciting developments unfolding.

Scheduled for Sunday August 25, and organised by Khayelitsha Athletics Club (AC), the Two Oceans Marathon (TOM), with 50 years of race organisation experience has come on board to lend a hand with race planning, marketing and generally advising and assisting with staging the event.

Transferring skills and uplifting others fall into the scope of what the Two Oceans Marathon Initiative (TOMI), the social impact arm of the Two Oceans Marathon, does and they are thoroughly enjoying working with the enthusiastic Khayelitsha AC squad.

After a year or two of support, TOM steps back and provides just a consulting role.

When the 2019 race organising committee shared their intention to encourage schools to participate in the 5km event – the Sports Science Institute of SA (SSISA), in conjunction with Woolworths, MySchool and Vukani newspaper offered to organise a Move for Health campaign, which is an initiative of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The aim is to encourage young people to be physically active and make healthy choices so they can live a full and happy
life and not end up sedentary, overweight, with heart disease, diabetes or even depression.

The local Move for Health campaign will see 180 local primary school pupils receiving a free 5km entry, a brightly coloured T-shirt for race day and a snack after completing the fun run.

This fun and encouraging school venture prompted TOMI to offer a similar opportunity for 180 high school children. With two of their pillars focusing on health and education, it was a great fit. Readers can expect to see at least 360 pupils out there on the roads of Khayelitsha come August 25, setting an example of how to lead a fit and active lifestyle.

All organisations involved in this event believe in the importance of looking after our environment and they are putting their money where their mouth is.

With plastics and littering being a big no-no – all 360 pupils will receive a nifty water-bottle with a handle – easy to carry when running and negating the need for them to use plastic water sachets.

Watch Vukani weekly for some inspiring and informative articles leading up to race day. Topics will include safe running; easy healthy meals on the go; opportunities to exercise in Khayelitsha; some inspiring Khayelitsha residents and keeping our environment clean.

Chantel Erfort, editor of Cape Community Newspapers which publishes Vukani and its sister papers, and Vukani team leader Vukile Sondanzi of Khayelitsha AC, will be leading by example – so expect to see them pounding the streets of Khayelitsha either in training or on race day.

“The benefits of moving more cannot be overestimated, and we look forward to seeing Khayelitsha’s youngsters out on the streets moving for their health,” said Chantel.

“We are thrilled to be part of an event like this one which contributes to the community in many different ways.”

Both the 5km and the 10km events are flat – which adds to their popularity as fast courses. That said – the event caters for both novice and experienced runners and walkers and you can enter online via Webtickets (check under running events) – or even buy an entry on the morning of the race.

The start and finish of both events are at the Mandela Park Stadium track in Khayelitsha, which provides free and secure parking for entrants.

The 10km kicks off at 7.30am and the 5km at 7.45am, and the event is held under the rules and regulations of ASA and Western Province Athletics (WPA).

There will be lucky draw prizes from SSISA, TOM, Woolworths and MySchool up for grabs, as well as some vendors catering for hungry participants.

Grab your running shoes, get training and don’t miss out on building a healthier, happier Khayelitsha community who are taking responsibility for their health.

For more information, email khayelitshaathleticclub@gmail.com

Kathleen McQuaide is an exercise scientist with SSISA.