British envoy joins residents inWanyoike marathon as society is asked to give the disabled opportunities

By Stephen Mburu
World renowned blind athlete Henry Wanyoike has asked the society to fully involve people with disabilities in development issues.
“Disability is not a barrier and people with disabilities just need opportunities and not sympathy from the society,” Wanyoike said during the seventh edition of the Henry Wanyoike Foundation at Kikuyu town on June 8.


In left photo: the British High Commissioner Christian Turner joins a local dancer in a jig after the 7.5km race in Kikuyu, Kiambu County, on June 8, 2013. Right: Turner joins HenryWanyoike, Kiambu Governor William Kabogo and KabeteMPGeorgeMuchai in flagging off the marathon atWangige. PHOTOS: Courtesy HenryWanyoike Foundation

The annual event, from Wangige to Kikuyu, was flagged off by the British High Commissioner Christian Turner. He was accompanied by Kiambu Governor William Kabogo and Kabete MP, who is also COTU deputy secretary general George Muchai.

The race was divided in three parts — 1.5km children’s run from Gitaru, 3km veterans’ race from Muthure (Wanyoike’s home area), and the main race of 7.5km from Wangige. It was open to juniors, seniors, as well as the physically-challenged.

Wanyoike, who became an athlete after he lost his site in 1995, has over the years won world athletic competitions in the handicapped category. He repeated his commitment to helping the youth in Kiambu County and the country in general develop their sporting talents.

Turner commended Wanyoike for starting the foundation which seeks to address issues such disabilities in the society. The theme of this year’s event was: ‘I support disability inclusion in the society.’

Mr Wanyoike thanked local and international institutions and businesses, including the major sponsor Safaricom, as well as local newspaper, the Metro Advertiser, for their support and pledged to offer full scholarships to needy children.

The participants witness winners being award. The money raised during the event goes towards helping orphans and vulnerable children at Theresia House of Hope Nursery School, which has more than 50 children. The funds also help educate needy students, as well as support sport.