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Eliud Kipchoge named in prestigious UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador role

Long-distance running icon Eliud Kipchoge has been honoured with the prestigious appointment as a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Sports Integrity and Values.

This announcement was made during UNESCO’s 9th International Conference against Doping in Sport, which took place in the heart of Paris.

Eliud Kipchoge during the launch the Kipchoge Limited Edition Isuzu D-Max on May 25, 2023 at General Motors in Nairobi.PHOTO|SILA KIPLAGAT

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Audrey Azoulay, the Director-General of UNESCO, expressed the organization’s shared commitment with Eliud Kipchoge towards promoting the values inherent in sports. She highlighted the essential role of these values as a catalyst for social interaction, sustainable development, and peace.

Kipchoge, renowned for his unparalleled success in long-distance running, has not only achieved athletic greatness but has also used his fame for the betterment of society.

He has been an inspiration to aspiring runners worldwide and has passionately advocated for various noble causes.

In a statement, Audrey Azoulay remarked, “He also used his fame to serve others and the public good by advocating for access to education for all and for climate action and by creating the Eliud Kipchoge Foundation in 2021. Today, he stands out as a role model for young athletes.”

As a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Sports Integrity and Values, Kipchoge will leverage his extensive experience and talent to enhance the impact of UNESCO’s initiatives globally.

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The Director-General noted that Kipchoge will play a crucial role in promoting the flagship sports initiative “Fit for Life,” which recognizes the pivotal role of young people in advancing sustainable development.

Under this initiative, Kipchoge will actively contribute to the Youth Accelerator Program, which focuses on empowering young individuals through sports activities and values-based training, equipping them with skills to contribute to their communities.

Eliud Kipchoge’s journey to becoming a sporting legend began as a young boy in Kenya, where he ran 3 kilometers to school every day. His exceptional career includes victories in the 5000m World Championships in Paris at the age of 18 and transitioning to road racing with the second-fastest half-marathon debut ever.

Kipchoge’s accolades also include winning 11 World Marathon Majors and securing gold medals at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro (2016) and Tokyo (2020). Notably, he etched his name in history by becoming the first person to break the two-hour marathon barrier in 2019.

In addition to his athletic achievements, Eliud Kipchoge established the Eliud Kipchoge Foundation, which primarily supports education programs in Kenya. The foundation strives to make education accessible by funding school fees and is dedicated to environmental preservation for the benefit of future generations. Its current goals encompass building libraries in every Kenyan school and planting forests in each of the country’s 47 counties.

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