The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen), has officially unveiled the Great Dams Race, an annual event seeking to create environmental awareness and raise funds to conserve the Seven Forks ecosystem.
The race is scheduled to take place on Saturday June 14, 2014 along the scenic backdrop of Masinga Dam and Mwea National Reserve. Unlike other annual races, this race offers a unique mix of marine and rugged savannah terrain for professional and amateur runners and provides an exceptional fun weekend for families.
The Seven Forks is home to five hydropower stations, which generate over 50 percent of the country’s electric power.
Masinga Dam is the largest in the Seven Forks cascade, located about 2 hours away from Nairobi (150 kilometers), off the Thika-Garissa road. Other dams in the cascade (Kamburu, Gitaru, Kindaruma and Kiambere) are located within reach and participants have the opportunity to visit and experience their unrivalled beauty.
The race offers a 21-kilometer half marathon as well as a 10-kilometer race. The event will kick off early Saturday morning culminating in an evening of lively entertainment. Participants will have the opportunity to tour a power plant, engage in boat rides and fishing in Masinga dam.
KenGen Managing Director and Chief Executive Albert Mugo said: “Our aim is to not only ensure Kenya’s energy security, but to also encourage organizations, the public and local communities to actively participate in environmental conservation for a sustainable future.”
He urged Kenyans to enroll in large numbers for the race as a way of contributing to the protection of the environment for present and future generations.
To enroll, participants will pay Ksh12,000,($138) while corporate teams of up to ten participants each will pay Ksh120,000 ($1380). Community members will pay Ksh200($2). Winners in the 21-kilometer individual male and female category will be awarded a cash prize of Ksh50,000 ($575) and a trophy, while second and third runners-up will receive cash prizes worth Ksh25,000 ($288) and Ksh15,000 ($173) respectively. Corporate teams category winners will receive Ksh120,000($1380) which will be donated to a community project.
KenGen Foundation Managing Trustee, Mike Njeru said proceeds from the race will be used in supporting various environmental initiatives including the Green Schools Initiative challenge – an afforestation project targeting primary and secondary schools.