Dubai expats run for 67 days to raise funds for sick kids

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charity, Dubai, UAE, Eid Al Adha, Eid, Al Jalila Foundation, Ahmed Ali, Janet Aly, runners, community, sports

Dubai - For the #Eid2Eid challenge, the group has set a target of $1,500 (Dh5,505) for donations.


Marie Nammour

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Published: Mon 6 Jul 2020, 4:14 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Jul 2020, 6:49 PM

A group of expats in Dubai has been running daily to raise donations for sick children whose parents cannot afford the costs of treatment.
Ahmed Ali, a British expat who has always been an avid runner, is one of them. Over the years, he has managed to turn his passion for sports into volunteering and helping others.
Recently, he started challenging himself to run 5km a day to raise funds for Al Jalila Foundation's Farah programme, which supports life-saving treatments for children suffering from heart disease, cancer and other chronic illnesses.
Ahmed has always had a soft spot for children. Two years ago, he also ran a marathon for them. "I raised $2,300 (Dh8,440) worth of donations for Al Jalila Foundation back then, while raising awareness for a girl that has a chronic disease," said the expat, who is originally from Egypt and works as a construction project manager.
This time, the Dubai resident is joined by his friends from around the world in bringing hope to kids. Some of them are running every day, while others find time to do laps a few days a week. 
"There are around 30 people running regularly in Dubai. About 20 others are also taking part, with some in the UK, Qatar and Egypt," he told Khaleej Times.
Janet Aly, an Australian expat in Dubai, admits she has never been a 'long-distance runner' but when she learnt about the challenge, she accepted it right away. 
"I have always worked for charities back home in Australia, helping youth at risk with mental health, homelessness, physical, sexual and drug abuse. I am willing to challenge myself and really want to get involved in this charitable work in any way that I could," said Janet, who helps out charities in the emirate when she can.
Eid run
Led by Ahmed, the group will run for a total of 67 days - from Eid Al Fitr to Eid Al Adha - for the challenge called #Eid2Eid. They have set a $1,500 (Dh5,505) target for donations. 
"We have raised $1,083 (Dh3,974) to date," he said. "Collectively, from the beginning of the challenge, we have run 2,300km so far. I usually run at sunset."
The challenge, which is the first of its kind, is endorsed by the Dubai Sports Council. "I call on everybody to stay active during this pandemic and donate, if possible," Ahmed said.

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