Olympic gold medallist Sally Gunnell goes to Africa to take part in the run to benefit ActionAid.
Olympic hurdler Sally Gunnell visited Ethiopia recently for two reasons: to take part in the Great Ethiopian Run, and raise awareness of the work of ActionAid in helping women in poverty.
The Great Ethiopian Run is described as 'the world’s toughest fun run', as it covers 10km at more than 2,300m above sea level. But the challenge doesn't deter many: the race is Africa's largest mass-participation sporting event.
What about the 'fun' part? Besides fierce competition to win first prize, the event is known for its carnival atmosphere: many runners like to sing and dance their way to the finish line.
The crowd is equally boisterous. Running is a massive part of Ethiopia's culture so the event usually attracts 36,000 spectators, many of them walking miles just to witness the spectacle.
TIt's an uplifting event. Gunnell says, 'The race was quite an experience...people would stop and dance and it was just like a party atmosphere.'
While she was in Ethiopia, the Olympic champion also met with women in poverty who have benefited from anti-poverty charity ActionAid's WISE Project, which provides loans, training, skills and advice to women so they are able to start their own business ventures and become self-sufficient.
As a global-ambassador for the charity, Gunnell saw first-hand the impact the programme has on women's lives.
See below for more pictures of Sally Gunnell's visit to Ethiopia.
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