2012 Amabeadibeadi Charity Launch

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In the spirit of giving and in the run-up to the 87th edition of The Ultimate Human Race, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) launched its 2012 Amabeadibeadi Charitable Drive in Sandton in the City of Gold today (Thursday, 8.3.2012).

Never before has the CMA prioritised its charitable outreach as it has this year, which goes hand in hand with the 2012 campaign, aptly titled: ‘The Spirit of Giving, The Spirit of Caring, The Spirit of Winning – That is the Spirit of Comrades’.

The campaign is aimed at fostering wider support for charitable fundraising for the CMA’s six official charities, namely Starfish Greathearts Foundation, Community Chest, Sports Trust, Wildlands Conservation Trust, Pink Drive and World Vision South Africa.

A major part of the 2012 Comrades-Amabeadibeadi Charity campaign has been the Toyota Win-a-Car Competition. This is a meaningful manifestation of the support that the Comrades Marathon has enjoyed from South Africa’s largest automotive manufacturer since 2010.

The ‘Toyota Win-a-Car Competition’ has been a driving force for Amabeadibeadi fundraising and sees thousands of rand channeled into the charitable coffers year on year. Runners and the greater public can enter the Win-a-car competition by sms’ing “TOYOTA” to 38275 at a cost of R10.00 per sms.

Another exciting facet to the 2012 campaign is the continuation of the Race4Charity initiative. Via this development, runners have the opportunity to “secure” their spot closer to the front of the Comrades start line and improve their seeding batch, while raising funds for a good cause and hence contributing to the greater good of South Africa.

Race4Charity gives individuals the opportunity to not just make a difference, but to unite people of all backgrounds to get involved and race collectively for the benefit of charities. So, if you’ve ever yearned to do something for the environment or to make a difference in the lives of the less fortunate, then this charitable innovation is for you.

Go to the Comrades website www.comrades.com and follow the Race4Charity link. Here, runners are able to sign up, while family, friends and supporters can donate and leave messages of motivation and encouragement. Runners get to choose which of the six Amabeadibeadi charities they would like to support.

The campaign takes on an added air of excitement as prizes are up for grabs for those who have raised the most funds. Besides that, nothing beats the feel-good sensation of being a do-gooder!

Also in its second year running is the famed Unogwaja Challenge, a collaboration of four Comrades enthusiasts – namely Dr WP Van Zyl, John McInroy, Paul Blake and Lourens Van Zyl – who follow in the footsteps of Phil Masterton-Smith, who at age 19 in 1931, remains the youngest ever winner of the event. He was affectionately known as “Unogwaja” which means ‘the hare’ in isiZulu.

Masterton-Smith who lived in Cape Town in 1933, couldn’t afford the train fare to Pietermaritzburg to run the Comrades Marathon but was so determined to compete that he cycled the 1700km distance in just 10 days and then ran the 89km ultra-marathon the following day, coming in tenth place.

This ultimate story of passion, willpower, courage and determination is mirrored by these four young men, who ran in his footsteps 78 years later. The funds raised via the Unogwaja Challenge will be ploughed into the Amabeadibeadi kitty.

Says CMA Chairman Peter Proctor, ‘The Amabeadibeadi Charitable Drive has become synonymous with what the Comrades Marathon is all about. Giving back to our country via the awesome work of our chosen charitable organisations is probably the most important thing we can do as the CMA and as passionate South Africans.’

Proctor adds, ‘We are grateful to our sponsors and charities alike for their tremendous support of the Comrades and are incredibly pleased with Amabeadibeadi’s achievements to-date. That said, we are also mindful that we can always strive to do more – as runners, spectators, supporters and stakeholders.’

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One Response to 2012 Amabeadibeadi Charity Launch

  1. Jimmy Parsons December 8, 2012 at 2:27 pm #

    Hi guys…. Trying like crazy to find the genuine amabeadi beads!!
    Wanted to give away as Christmas gifts…..
    Where can I buy the “real” thing?
    Thank you. Jimmy Parsons. No. 11959

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