- Makes call for participants and sponsors
- N5million Naira total prize money
A coalition of environmental conservation groups have announced details for hosting of the 2nd edition of the Mangrove Marathon, which is a 10km eco-awareness run committed to raising awareness and resources towards mangrove restoration and conservation efforts across Nigeria’s coastline.
Following from the success of the debut edition in Warri, Delta state 2022, the coalition have declared that the event, which is in commemoration of the International Day for Conservation of Mangroves, will take place along the Lekki Free Trade Zone expressway in Ibeju -Lekki, Lagos on the 29th of July, 2023.
Mangroves, often called the “lungs” or “guardians” of our coasts, play very vital roles in mitigating climate change by absorbing 15 times more carbon than regular forest, providing essential habitats for diverse marine species, protecting coastal communities from being wiped off by ocean surge and serve as food, shelter, energy, and medicine sources for millions of coastal dwellers living below the poverty line.
Sadly, these vital ecosystems are facing unprecedented threats due to human activities, including deforestation, urbanisation, industrialisation and pollution from every sector of the society; hence the event aims to make a significant impact in their restoration and conservation, with a view to ensuring a sustainable and greener future by the preservation of these natural carbon sinks and shoreline protection species to reduce the impacts of climate change and slow coastal erosion from rising sea levels.
According to the organizers, this edition promises to be a thrilling experience for participants of all ages and fitness levels, with options to also participate virtually from any part of the world. Runners and walkers will traverse picturesque coastal routes, passing through lush mangrove ecosystems, witnessing the beauty and importance of these incredible natural wonders.
To make the Mangrove Marathon a resounding success, the organizers are seeking passionate runners and sponsors who are committed to environmental conservation, with a total prize money of N5,000,000 for the first 60 participants across the male & female categories.
The event will also enable sponsors to showcase their dedication to sustainability and corporate social responsibility, whilst also having their brands gain extensive exposure through various event marketing materials, social media campaigns, press coverage, and on-site visibility during the marathon.
According to the Convener, Mr. Jerry Chidi; a renowned environmental photographer and author of the book – Man & Mangroves, sponsors of the Mangrove Marathon will not only enjoy valuable brand recognition but also be recognized as leaders in environmental stewardship. “Your support will directly contribute to mangrove reforestation initiatives, research programs, community education projects and acquire carbon credits from our blue carbon partners – thus reducing your carbon footprints and a lasting positive impact on our coastal ecosystems” he said.
“Creating awareness and consciousness for mangrove and forest restoration is crucial for preservation of the environment. As the foremost environmental NGO in Nigeria, we are excited to participate in this initiative. We have always been part of it since inception, and we are committed to see to this year’s success” – revealed by Dr. Joseph Onoja, Director General of Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF).
“We believe the Mangrove Marathon is a powerful way to engage the community and raise awareness about the significance of mangrove conservation,” said Prince David Omaghomi, the Secretary of the Local Organizing Committee and Founder of Eco-Restoration Foundation.
“By uniting together with sponsors who share our vision, we can protect these invaluable habitats and promote a sustainable future and our success stories attest to the power of collaboration” said Ms. Doyin Ogunye, Founder of Reswaye – the Recycling partners for the Mangrove Marathon.
On their parts, Mr Henry Erikowa of Falcorp Mangrove Sanctuary, Warri Delta State; the representative of the host State & Local Government, Barrister Afeez Otunoye; as well as members of the Athletic Federation of Nigeria all lauded the Mangrove Marathon and pledged to contribute to its success as partners of the coalition.