On Wednesday October 11 to Saturday, October 14, the streets of Antigua will come alive as the Sandals Foundation hosts its first ever all-island charity run to bolster paediatric healthcare services provided at the Mount St. John’s Centre as well as through the Sickkids Caribbean Initiative.
The event, which aims to raise £100,000 boasts three distinct levels of participation invites persons take part in – a 4-day Ultra Marathon 100KM Run; a 21Km Half Marathon Run on Saturday, October 14; or a10Km walk also on Saturday, October 14.
Speaking at the media launch on Wednesday, August 23, Matthew Cornall, General Manager at Sandals Grande Antigua said the event is aimed at bolstering the island’s capacity to provide medical attention to premature babies and children afflicted by cancer and serious blood disorders.
“We understand how a lack of access to the right medical equipment and resources can significantly affect a country’s ability to provide the proper medical attention to families and especially, children. That’s why the Sandals Foundation is proud to be staging the first ever Island Run Antigua to benefit two long-time beneficiaries of ours – the Paediatric Unit of Mount St. John’s Medical Centre, now renamed the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre and the SickKids Caribbean Initiative (SCI)”.
“Proceeds from our upcoming Island Run Antigua,” Cornall says, “Will be used to purchase two much-needed identified medical equipment [for the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre] – a jaundice screening machine and a handheld blood analyzer that delivers lab-quality, diagnostic results in minutes. Funds raised from the run will [also] be donated to SickKids Caribbean Initiative endowment fund, ensuring continued sustainability of the initiative, benefitting many for years to come.”
The Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre in Antigua is the only acute care facility on the island that offers 24-hour emergency care for babies in need of critical care as well as those born prematurely.
The philanthropic arm’s second beneficiary – the SickKids Caribbean Initiative, since 2013, has aided in diagnosis of paediatric cancer and serious blood disorders by connecting Antiguan and the wider Caribbean doctors and nurses to each other and the world.
Dr. Shivon Belle-Jarvis, Chair of the Paediatric Department expressed gratitude for what the support will mean for countless families. “We are happy to embrace the assistance of organizations such as the Sandals Foundation and others, who recognize the importance of the early years and the impact that donations have on future generations. The chance of a healthy life to a child is the greatest gift you can give a family.”
To register for any of the events, persons may:
Download the TickeTing App from Google Play Story or Apple and search, Island Run Antigua, Visit any of our three physical locations – H & G Paint & Marine Supplies at the corner of Fort Road and Dickenson Bay; Cool & Smooth at Lower Market Street; and Athlete’s Foot at Heritage Quay
For persons interested to support but are unable to participate they may donate to the cause by visiting https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/islandrun
Island Run Antigua was conceptualized by members of Sandals Resorts International’s Unique Vacations Inc. UK team and has garnered international partnership through British Airways, Mail Metro Media, Runners World and Good Housekeeping Magazine, Northstar Meetings Group, Corpay, Hays Travel, 7Stars, EMC3, Upsamdown and UYN.
Local partners so far include TickeTing App, Digicel Group, Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, and Anjo Wholesale.