NEW YORK – April 11, 2017 – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) hosted its 13th Annual Healthy Kidney 10K in New York City on Sunday, April 9, gathering a field of elite athletes who led more than 8,600 finishers through Central Park. The race, organized by New York Road Runners in partnership with the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC, UAE Consulate in New York and the National Kidney Foundation, raises awareness of kidney disease and pays tribute to the UAE’s founder and first President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan who was treated for kidney disease in the United States.
“The UAE is proud to support the National Kidney Foundation through this annual event,” His Excellency Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the US said. “The UAE Healthy Kidney 10K promotes kidney health and wellness and celebrates American excellence in kidney disease treatment and prevention.”
UAE officials, Lieutenant General Mohamed Alkaabi and Lieutenant Colonel Mohamed Amer of the UAE Armed Forces Officers’ Club in Abu Dhabi attended the race and presented awards to the top finishers, including Sam Chelanga of the US, who won the men’s race with a time of 28 minutes and 21 seconds and Mamitu Daska of Ethiopia, who won the women’s race with a time of 31 minutes and 37 seconds.
“The UAE Healthy Kidney 10K reinforces the shared interests and values we have with the US, especially here in New York,” His Excellency Majid Al-Suwaidi, UAE Consul General in New York said. “We look forward to continuing our support and partnership in important events like the kidney run.”
Following the 10K, thousands of runners joined the post-race festival and participated in Emirati cultural activities, giveaways and raffle prizes, including a two roundtrip tickets to Abu Dhabi courtesy of Etihad Airways, a two-night stay at Emirates Palace and passes to Yas Marina Circuit, Ferrari World Abu Dhabi and Yas Waterworld.
The festival was supported by UAE partners including Al Habtoor, Global Aerospace Logistics, International Golden Group, Caliente, Etihad Airways, Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Channel, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Expo 2020, New York City Football Club, Jujitsu Federation, Al Forsan and Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority, which distributed special children’s books highlighting UAE culture and heritage.
The UAE Healthy Kidney 10K was launched in May 2005 in honor of Sheikh Zayed, who received a kidney transplant in the US. Among this many honors and accomplishments, he was most proud of being a kidney transplant survivor and encouraged research and advancement in kidney disease and treatment.