Marriott International has unveiled plans for its annual Road to Awareness campaign, raising funds for charities across Africa and the Middle East.
Under the leadership of Marriott chief operating officer for the Middle East, Guido Wilde, the event focuses on providing thousands of children across the regions with a better way to experience the world and providing them with a better future.
The Road to Awareness associate fundraising campaign has been making a positive difference to children in communities in since 2008.
Every year, employees throughout Africa and the Middle East organise fundraising events to help raise funds for vital projects that improve the lives of children whose existence has been severely impacted by limitations imposed by poverty, violence or war, leading to a lack of education or serious health and hygiene issues.
Over the past ten years this initiative has generated close to US$8 million which has been distributed over many projects across Africa and the Middle East and has enabled to improve the lives of thousands of children and families.
The focus on doing the right thing and going the extra step has clearly worked.
This is a campaign that is very close to the hearts of the former Starwood associates, and under the Marriott International expanded portfolio, organisers launched the broader Road to Awareness campaign as well as the traditional and challenging bike ride across the combined portfolio in the region.
This year, as Marriott International, it will support various charity partners in the Middle East and Africa.
Throughout the past ten years a three-day bike ride has always been the anchor highlight of the campaign and this year a new destination with a very challenging route has been selected.
The first nine years mastered the legendary climbs of the Tour de France or the Giro d’Italia, but in 2017 the focused was changed and covered close to 600 kilometres over three days in Jordan.
This was a huge success and the entire campaign for Road to Awareness brought in $630,000.
This year the Road to Awareness caravan to will head to African and will be holding its 11th annual bike-ride from August 2nd-4th in the Western Cape in South Africa - with 33 cyclists who confirmed their participation from all over the continent.
The program is as follows:
Day 1: Cape Town to Wine Lands: The team will leave from the Cape Town City centre on the foothills on Table Mountain and ride to the university town of Stellenbosch, covering a distance of 205 kilometres. The day have a few twists install for the riders, taking them over two of the biggest mountain passes in the Cape Region ending the day on 2,400 meters of climbing.
Day 2: Wine Lands to Whale Coast: This day will take the group from Stellenbosch over Franschhoek Mountain Pass into “apple country” to the world-famous whale watching town of Hermanus, covering a distance of 185 kilometres and 2,350 meters of elevation.
Day 3: Whale Coast to City: The final day we say good bye to the Whale Coast, head back to Cape Town snaking our way all along the coast line via Cape Point and Chapmans Peak. We will connect with the world-famous Cape Town Cycle Tour route, the biggest timed bicycle race in the world, covering a distance of close to 200 kilometres with 2,500 height meters.
Funds raised will go to two charity organisations in the Middle East.
The Al Jalila Foundation, a global philanthropic organisation dedicated to transforming lives through medical education and research, which was founded by sheikh
Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai in April 2013 with the aim to position Dubai and the UAE at the forefront of medical innovation.
Al Jalila Foundation is fully funded by the generosity of donors. The funds will specifically support a program called Farah (‘Joy’ in Arabic) and Al Jalila Foundation’s paediatric programme which provides medical care for children in the UAE, suffering from heart disease, cancer and other chronic diseases.
Farah also invests a great deal into local medical research of childhood illnesses to discover better treatment options.
The King Hussein Cancer Foundation in Jordan. The King Hussein Cancer Foundation is an independent, non-governmental, not-for-profit institution founded in 1997 by royal decree to combat cancer in Jordan and the Middle East region.
The Foundation is the largest community-based organization in Jordan dedicated to combating cancer.
Last year when meeting with the leadership of the foundation it became very clear how much they are in need of funds and after having donated US$110,000 as a result of our 2017 fundraising.
The funds raised will be directed to upgrading the medical capacity of the King Hussein Cancer Centre by equipping the Centre with the latest medical equipment, both for diagnostic and treatment purposes.
To donate to Road to Awareness head over to the official website.