Tanzanian Olympians Run the Berlin Marathon for Save a Child's Heart
Sunday, 16th September at the BMW Berlin Marathon saw 2 Tanzanian Olympians running their hearts out in support of the Israeli non-profit international humanitarian charity, Save A Child’s Heart (SACH). Andrea Sipe Sambu and Said Juma Makula were running to help raise public knowledge of the plight of children born with congenital heart disease (CHD) in developing countries and Tanzania in particular. To that end, Save A Child’s Heart has saved the lives of 610 Tanzanian children brought to Israel for surgery and a further 132 on medical missions to that country. SACH also trained Tanzania’s first paediatric surgeon Dr Godwin Godfrey and helped set up a paediatric cardiology wing in the Bugando Medical Centre in Mwazana, Tanzania.
Andrea was the fastest of our athletes with a time of 2 hours 45 minutes and special mention must go to Berlin-based Englishman, Fred Thackery-Vincent who fundraised for SACH, it was his first marathon and he finished in 3 hours 39 minutes, although the run was to primarily highlight CHD, almost £9k was raised by the runners. Fred’s just giving page is still open if anyone would like to donate, it's https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/fred-vincent.
The Monday after the race, a reception for the runners was held at the Tanzanian Embassy hosted by H.E.Ambassador Dr Abdallah Saleh Possi, who congratulated the athletes for helping to highlight the plight of CHD in the developing world. SACH’s participation in the event was organised by SACH UK’s Aleksandra Gawlytta, who spoke at the reception and emphasised the fact that SACH is enormously proud of the work they have done in Tanzania since 1999 and especially the fact that not only have they trained Tanzania’s first paediatric cardiologist, but also trained a further 25 medical staff and sent 15 medical missions to that country.
Aleksandra also thanked our sponsors OFFLINE, Target Global, Soul of Tanzania and TANAPA. She acknowledged the help and support of the Hon President of Athletics Tanzania Mr Anthony Mtaka and Arusha Regional Athletic Associations General Secretary Mr Alfredo Shahanga.
Save a Child's Heart is already looking forward to next year’s Berlin Marathon in 2019!