The Angkor Wat International Half Marathon, which takes place each December in Siem Reap, is a popular ‘runcation’ for many expats. It’s a test of fitness and endurance, with a scenic route around the Angkor Wat temples to keep you going. Linking in with the run, and with the aim of raising money to provide medical care for children in Cambodia, the Angkor Hospital for Children (AHC) started its Get Active campaign last year. Here, AHC’s events manager Maxine Barker and communications manager Sarah Cuiksa answer some of our questions about how we can all get involved.
What’s the aim of the campaign?
Our Get Active message is intended to encourage our community to think about health and wellness year-round. Whether that’s participating in your favourite sporting activities, or incorporating regular exercise into your routine, Get Active is about a making a mindset shift towards a healthier lifestyle.
Internally, we have employee engagement programs in place to encourage our staff to stay active, allowing them to be an example of good health in the community. Externally, along with running on behalf of AHC at the Angkor Wat International Half Marathon, we’re also involved in numerous cycling events through the year.
You raised over $200,000 in 2017; are you hoping for more this year?
Our aim is to sign more than 200 runners to participate on behalf of Team AHC, with a goal of raising over $250,000 in funds. At the moment, we have roughly 50 runners registered from around the region (with a registration deadline of 15 October).
What are the costs?
To register with Team AHC for the 21km half marathon it’s $100 ($75 otherwise), for the 10km it’s $90 ($68 otherwise), and for the 3km is $50 ($48 otherwise). Added perks of a team registration include a t-shirt, additional VIP logistical support surrounding the marathon, and an invitation to our free Refuel Brunch, which includes a hospital tour, providing insights into the inner workings of the organisation, and an ability to network with fellow runners, AHC board members and staff).
Where do the funds go?
One hundred percent of the funds raised will go towards improving healthcare for Cambodia’s children. The proceeds are unrestricted – also known as flexible funding – allowing us to spend where the need is the greatest, plugging any gaps financially. This includes delivering programs that allow us to provide daily health care to nearly 500 patients, purchasing hospital equipment and supplies, general operating costs and more.
Where are you both from, and will you be running this year?
Maxine is from Newcastle in the UK, and has lived in Siem Reap for three years. She ran the half marathon last year, along with her partner, and raised $2,000 for the hospital, and will be running again this year. Sarah is originally from the US, and new to Siem Reap. She’ll be participating in the 10km race.
We also have last year’s winner, Irish expat Maire Nic Amlaoibh, participating on behalf of Team AHC. She’ll be travelling from Singapore, where she currently lives and works, to support our cause.
Our development and fundraising team, a mix of local Cambodian staff and expats, will be running or joining the team on the sidelines. Many of AHC’s staff, including the executive committee and board members, also actively participate year after year.
See more in our Health & Fitness section!
Check out these running tips, to get you in shape for Angkor Wat