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UN Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace to Run for UNHCR in the Nike+ Human Race

UN Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace to Run for UNHCR in the Nike+ Human Race

Wilfried Lemke, Special Adviser to the United Nations Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace, will participate in the Nike+ Human Race this Sunday, 31 August 2008, in Munich to raise funds and awareness about the UN refugee agency’s (UNHCR) ninemillion.org campaign which aims to bring sport and education to refugee youth.

The race, considered as the world’s biggest one-day running event, brings together the power of sport and music to inspire and connect runners from every corner of the planet, as well as to support one of three global causes: the UNHCR’s ninemillion.org campaign, the Lance Armstrong Foundation and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

“Sport’s universal reach and popularity, its capacity as a powerful global communications platform, and its profound ability to connect people and to build their capacities makes it a valuable instrument for peace and development. I am proud to run for UNHCR in Munich and I send everyone involved my very best wishes for an unforgettable day, which celebrates the powerful influence for good that sport can be” Mr. Lemke states in a message of support to the organizers and participants.

Two months ago, Mr. Lemke visited the refugee camp of Dagahaley, one of the three UNHCR refugee camps located around Dadaab, a small town 80 km away from the Kenya-Somalia border. He witnessed how sport can help persons in plight, traumatized by flight and violence, how it can provide them with a semblance of normality and how it can help them integrate and communicate.

On the occasion of the Human Race, UNHCR will have runners in all corners of the world helping to elevate the cause of refugee children. From sole UNHCR staff members running in Dakar, Senegal and Triblisi, Georgia, to the 3,000 refugees and host community members running in Nepal, refugees and those who work to protect them will join this unprecedented global event to highlight the fact that refugees are just like every other member of the human race, willing and able to make a better future through their own actions.

U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres comments that "the UN refugee agency is pleased to be able to benefit from the generosity of people around the world who have chosen to run the Nike+ Human Race and support our ninemillion.org campaign. These runners are helping us to make a real difference in the lives of refugee children in Chad, many of whom have fled Darfur."

For more information, please contact:

Antoine Tardy, United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace.
Email: atardy@unog.ch; telephone: +41 22 917 47 12.

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Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace

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Thursday, August 28, 2008 - 15:00

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