If you could solve a little portion of a huge problem by running, would you not take part in it? On September 24, 2017, a project of Marriott International 'Run to Give 2017' was held, where over two hundred and fifty people participated. The charity run was arranged by both Le Méridien Dhaka and Four Points by Sheraton in an effort to raise funds for the non-profit organisation 'Room to Read'. The initiative strives to eradicate illiteracy, working round the clock all over Bangladesh and the world.
Rakhi Sarkar, country Director of Room to Read, Bangladesh, says, “Room to Read focuses on both primary and secondary school kids so that they can develop a reading habit.” She further adds, “We try to teach young girls the decision making skills so that, in the near future, they can take hold of their own lives and live according to their wish.”
The event started at 7 a.m. in the morning and the distance was spread over 10 km starting from International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB) to Kanchon Bridge and back to the starting point. Tight security and closed off roads for the runners' safety and comfort were ensured. Although hot and humid, all the runners, organisers along with guests had bright smiles on their faces. Emon Hussain, one of the participants and winner of the marathon, says, “The atmosphere here is really refreshing and welcoming. Hopefully, I will be able to take it on next year too.”
Mr. Gavriel Constantinos, G.M. of Le Méridien, comments, “The charity run so far has been really successful this year as more people seem to be joining in for the cause and hopefully, next year, it will be even more successful.” Along with that, upon asking why running was chosen as the medium for collecting funds, Arman Al-Huda, Director of HR of Le Méridien tells Star Youth, “I believe that running helps us bring people together.” The special guest, Mr. Shafin Ahmed from the famous band Miles, in his speech said, “Thank you all for coming and joining us for the run, it is a wonderful initiative and the country at a time like this needs more people like you. Today, we all run to give and hopefully, will keep on giving to the society."
The wonderful event had to come to an end, however, it ended with words of appreciation from both the GM of Le Méridien and Four points by Sheraton. Along with handing over the donation cheque to Room to Read, medals were awarded to the winners of the run, and finally, Mr. Shafin Ahmed's brief yet wonderful singing closed the event with a positive note.