South African Earth Warrior and Social Justice Activist, Catherine Constantinides to take up the challenge and use her profile and passion for the environment and human rights, this time to participate in the 2019 Sahara Marathon. The marathon will be taking place on the 26th of February in the Sahara Desert.As an internationally renowned climate activist and human rights defender, this South African Earth Warrior is no stranger to challenge and adventure. And has set her mind firmly on participating in this desert run. She serves on the Saharawi Human Rights Council and has been travelling back and forth to the refugee camps as a humanitarian for the past five years. She is participating in this particular event to raise awareness and honour the Saharawi freedom fighters and victims of landmines in the region. Last year she spent time with Aziz Haider who is the founder of the Saharawi Association of Landmine Victims (ASAVIM).According to various estimates there are still between 5 – 10 Million landmines still in the Sahara, “Western Sahara is one of the most contaminated territories in the world,” the UN Mine Action Service says on its website. Landmines and explosive remnants of war “remain widespread” and “there is very limited information available regarding the location of hazardous areas”, it warns. High winds, sandstorms and rainfall also pose a challenge as they can hide, reveal or move landmines.According to Aziz Haidar, who has lost three of his limbs in a mine blast, such explosions have caused more than 300 casualties since a ceasefire which took effect in 1991.The Sahara Marathon is an international sport event hosted in the Sahara Desert every year. The aim of the marathon was designed to demonstrate solidarity with the Saharawi people, first initiated in 2001, organised by the Secretary of State for Sport, under the auspices of the Government of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and with the help of volunteers from all over the world.Constantinides has been actively engaged in highlighting causes across the continent linked to climate change and human rights for more than a decade, her work as a former Miss Earth South Africa has seen her work passionately in the waste, water and food security space as she leads educational and community development projects linked to these spaces in furthering the movement towards the Sustainable Development Goals. Her work through her organisation Generation Earth has gained much momentum across South Africa and the world over the past eight years.This activist says it is certainly the biggest physical challenge she has ever committed to and has already begun preparing for the upcoming marathon. Her goal is to highlight the ‘ #StandInTheSand ’ solidarity movement which gives a voice and presence to the last colony in Africa, Western Sahara.Western Sahara is the last colony in Africa. A Spanish colony from 1884 to 1975 when Spain failed to finish the decolonization process which it promised to achieve. Instead, Spain, Morocco and Mauritania signed a secret agreement to divide this African territory into two parts by military control by Morocco from the North and Mauritania from the South while Spain maintained privileged economic interests especially in the illegal exploitation of the rich fisheries and phosphate of Western Sahara.The Polisario Front, the Saharawi liberation movement was already constituted in 1973 to fight against Spanish colonialism, but found itself encircled by the two armies and had to deliver a heroic fight against the two African armies and at the same time to build a genuine Saharawi Nation and ‘State in Exile’ which was declared on the 27th of February 1976 as the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic, also a founding member of the African Union.Constantinides’ active humanitarian work in the Saharawi Refugee Camps over the past five years has brought international awareness to this more than 43-year-old conflict. Now she runs in the sand for a people who continue to fight for self-determination and justice.The Sahara Marathon, includes the standard-distance marathon also includes a half marathon of 21km, 10km, 5km and a special children’s race which is aimed at promoting sport activity. Funds raised through the marathon assist in financially supporting and developing humanitarian programmes. More so to use the power and strength of sport and its unifying power to raise awareness and sensitize the world about the plight and struggle of the forgotten people of Africa; the Saharawi people of Western Sahara.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Some clouds around today, but generally we at least see a mix of clouds and sun. Precipitation should stay at bay today and tomorrow, and temps remain relatively close to normal. On Wednesday we see thicker clouds and we cant rule out a few spits and sprinkles, leading to a damp day, but with very minor overall precipitation… .01″-.04″ is likely all we see with 50% coverage. Still, it will not be the driest day.A cold front sweeps across the state later Thursday. Clouds will be increasing through the day, and we expect rain from afternoon on through early Friday morning. Right now we are pulling rain totals for this event back just a little bit, from .1″-.6″ over 90% of Ohio. The rains look heavier off to the west. We turn partly sunny for Friday midday and afternoon with relatively clear sky overnight Friday night.Partly sunny skies at sunrise on Saturday will be quickly replaced by clouds. We have a second wave of moisture surging across the southern US is trying to lift north. We are adding rain to the forecast for Saturday midday and afternoon, but looking for it to end shortly after sunset. This can add an additional .1″-.4″ to 80% of the state. In the back of our minds we are thinking this could easily stay south of the Ohio River, but we are not seeing much model consensus on that, so we are going to allow for the second around of moisture in our forecast right now, and will watch it from here.Dry to finish the weekend on Sunday and we stay dry to start next week, Monday through Tuesday night. WE see sunshine dominating all three days. Clouds will be on the increase next Wednesday morning, and we likely have to deal with a few minor showers Wednesday afternoon, just ahead of thanksgiving. However, moisture potential looks pretty light. The map at right shows combined moisture potential through next Wednesday morning.Temps from late this week through next stay normal to slightly above. WE do not see a major cold push at this time, and the temps stay in the normal to above normal range on through the extended 11-16 day forecast period as well. Right now Thanksgiving day looks dry, but we may have a bit of moisture coming in later in that holiday weekend.