Alfred Kipsane and Agnes Jepkosgei emerged winners in the Kimbilio Marathon held at Chebaiywo Village, Uasin Gishu County in celebration of this year’s World Hospice and Palliative Care Day.
Kipsane clocked 2:16:0 to earn victory with Edwin Yator and Joakim Kiprop finishing in second and third position with 2:17:2 and 2:17:7 on the clock respectively.
Pamela Jepkosgei and Beatrie Ruto gave a stiff fight to finish second and third with a time of 2:53:1 and 2:58.5 respectively in the women category.
Agnes Jepkosgei finished at position five in last year’s Berlin Marathon, a good ground that saw her pull out of the crowd to cross the finishing line first..
The winner in each category was awarded with Ksh. 350,000 with position two and three carrying home Ksh. 150, 000 and 100,000 respectively.
Other cash prizes were awarded to holders of position four to fifteen with position four taking home Ksh. 30,000 and position 15 taking home Ksh. 4,000.
After the awarding ceremony, Kimbilio hospice Chairman Bishop David Tarus said he was glad the marathon was successful, being one way to open the area to the world.
Bishop Tarus said there are people in the village who have a human hearth and have positively supported the hospice initiative in the area and he congratulated them.
He recounted how someone from Busia sent Ksh. 10 to support patients at the hospice after seeing the story on television.
“You don’t need to have millions to help someone; even a shilling can go a long way to support our patients in one way or another.” Bishop Tarus said.
He said that there are over 400 people affected in the area and those who see what they do to help them and support them; they appreciate.
The International Director at Kimbilio Julia Boit urged supporters to keep praying for them even as they offer support to the Hospice financially.
“We trust that God cares more than we can comprehend and the far we have come is by the grace of God.”
Uasin Gishu County Governor Jackson Mandago said the treatment and level of cleanliness at Kimbilio is not measurable to most dispensaries.
“The Hospice gets referrals from Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital as well as Kenyatta National Hospital, the country’s main referral hospitals. This shows that Kimbilio is the mother of all referral hospitals and we have no choice other than supporting it.” Mandago said.
The governor thanked the sponsors adding that this was a program worthy supporting. ‘You have put your money where it deserves.’
The area Member of Parliament Elisha Busienei said that with the support from the county government, the road to Kimbilio Hospice from the main road will be improved for ease of accessibility.
“Next year, we are going to pump some money into this marathon to make it more interesting and also seek other avenues to help this facility.” Busienei Said.
The Managing Director at Living Room International Mr. Joel Sawe on behalf of the ordinary people they serve appreciated the support from all.
“We appreciate the locals for embracing the hospice and realizing its need. We are in one way or another affected by these terminal illnesses.” Mr. Sawe said.
Living Room International Board Treasurer Mr. William Kirwa said it is high time the government took a firm stand on cancer.
“Cancer is affecting a lot of people and it is time the government declared it a national disaster so that more resources can be pumped into the sector.” Mr. Kirwa said.
Despite the small space at Kimbilio, Mr. Kirwa said they are able do a lot of work to keep the patients comfortable.
The Kimbilio Marathon attracted 105 men and 39 female marathoners as a similar marathon was held in USA to raise more funds for Kimbilio.