Girls Run 10k Almaty

31 October 2016

400 women from different countries participated in the first women only race in Almaty on 30 October 2016. The main aim of the Girls Run 10k Almaty was to increase women's participation in sports.

The race was organized in the context of UNESCOs global programme on physical education and sport. Therefore, UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty took an active part in organization and conduction of the event.

In many Central Asian countries there are still some barriers to womens participation in physical activity, especially in sports. Kazakhstan is not an exclusion. The survey showed that most of the Central Asian women consider sport is masculine and elitist, women cannot wear unrespectable clothes (e.g. shorts, leggings) that are not covering most of their bodies, women must stay at home and look after the children and house; widespread myth about sports negative influence on female fertility.

Girls Run 10k Almaty is the first step to womens empowerment in sports in Kazakhstan. Many female expatriates, who is living and working in Almaty came to the event to support this initiative. Even one man dressed as a woman ran 10 km to cheer up female participants.

Luina, a Kazakhstan star, popular singer and TV presenter has been appointed as Goodwill Ambassador of the "Girl's Run 10km Almaty". She brought a big attention to women about the importance of sports in everyday life and highlighted that women are just as capable and have the same rights as men to exercise and stay healthy.

The first places among the participants in three age categories as follows:

16-30 years - Gulzhanat Zhanatbek (33 minutes 44 seconds),

31-44 years - Catherine Shatnaya (38 minutes 42 seconds),

45 years and older - Zanfira Chernukhina (42 minutes 59 seconds).

UNESCO staff also took part in the girls run and received memorable medals.

Co-organizers of the run: Almaty Marathon Foundation, School of running I love running, Almaty Mayor Office.

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