Under the bright Egyptian sun, a sea of 31,000 runners surged across the starting line in the New Administrative Capital, 50 kilometres from Cairo, marking the eighth edition of the Zayed Charity Run. The spirit of giving pervaded the atmosphere, with not only athletic prowess but also acts of kindness taking centre stage.
The marathon, inaugurated by Egypt’s Minister of Youth and Sports Ashraf Sobhy under the auspices of President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi, saw participants of all ages and abilities compete for a share of EGP10min prize money distributed across diverse categories. This inclusivity extended beyond the podium, with 3,884 runners with disabilities proudly taking on the challenge.
But the rewards went beyond monetary treasures. A special draw offered 100 Umrah trips for two, adding a touch of spiritual grace to the day’s bounty. The event’s namesake, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the UAE’s founding father, would have no doubt been proud of the spirit of generosity that transcended borders.
UAE Ambassador to Egypt Mariam Al-Kaabi emphasised the deep-rooted bonds between the two countries, highlighting the enduring popularity of the run among Egyptians. Minister Sobhy echoed this sentiment, commending the diverse participation – “youth, people of all ages, and people with disabilities” – that embodied the marathon’s true essence.
Beyond the race itself, the Zayed Charity Run promised substantial support for worthy causes. Proceeds will be directed to the Misr El-Kheir Foundation, Al-Nas Hospital, and other healthcare institutions, ensuring that the ripple effects of this day of unity will extend far beyond the finish line.