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iThemba Walkathon 2020 goes virtual and nationwide

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The annual iThemba Walkathon is hosting this year’s event digitally and is giving thousands of participants across the country an opportunity to take part in the virtual race.

Avon Justine will once again team up with non-governmental organisations to host the first-ever virtual national walkathon on Saturday, October 31, to raise funds for breast cancer awareness and education.

Safety and the need to minimise social gatherings is a primary concern this year, so the 15th edition of the iThemba Walkathon will be done differently this year.

There will be no starting line, no parking problems, no crowds, no road closures and traffic disruptions, no long queues for the loo.

Under the new normal, there will be no cheering, no finishing line, no entertainment after the long walk, no catching up with friends and family, no chit-chat.

On the flip side, you get to choose your route and will receive push notifications informing you of the distance you have walked.

And all South Africans are given the opportunity to walk for a purpose and contribute meaningfully in the fight against breast cancer.

Mafahle Mareletse, managing director of Avon Justine Turkey, Middle East & Africa, says: “Though it is critical that we should marshal all available resources to contain the spread of Covid-19, it is equally important that we should also ensure that breast cancer patients and survivors also receive the necessary support, particularly now during these uncertain times when health facilities are under severe strain.

“This virtual national iThemba Walkathon will give survivors of breast cancer the opportunity to celebrate the milestone they have achieved, and will mark a triumph of the human spirit as encapsulated under the theme: My Time to Make Difference, Watch Me Now.”

The first 30 000 participants to register for the 2020 edition of the iThemba Walkathon will receive a walk pack which includes an Avon/Justine product, a free commemorative T-shirt and other goodies from corporate voices who support the promotion of breast health.

The funds will be donated to the Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa), Wings of Hope, Look Good…Feel Better and JourneySys as well as organise the 2021 Avon Justine iThemba Walkathon to help raise breast cancer awareness and promote early detection saves lives.

The decision to continue hosting this annual event, which is the biggest Avon breast cancer walkathon in the world, is in response to the increased risk of infection and severe complications during the lockdown due to the reduced capacity of public health facilities which are dealing with Covid-19 cases, and the deferred treatment of breast cancer cases.

Participants can buy tickets for R150 (adults) and R100 (children under the age of 12) from www.ithembawalkathon.co.za. Entry for children under the age of 2 is free.

Once the participant has registered and their registration is confirmed, they will receive a link to download an app which they can use to receive breast cancer education and reminders of the event closer to the date.

The app also has a tracking function that allows participants to track and share their walking route in real-time with their loved ones.

The app also allows participants to share their pictures on customised iThemba Walkathon frames on their favourite social media platforms by using the hashtag #2020iThembaWalkathon.

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