To sign cheque or run for fund? Bankers opt for Covid-19 run

Monday October 26 2020
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Charity begins at the bank. Staff of Standard Chartered Bank run around their office premises in Kampala at the weekend. PHOTO/COURTESY

By Regina Nalujja

Most people would say that the easiest way for a banker to contribute toward Covid-19 relief fund is by signing that cheque. Quiet so. But not the fittest way, as staff at Standard Chartered Bank have agreed on.
To raise funds for the populace impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, Standard Chartered Bank employees have opted to partake in an individual sponsored 200km Home Run Challenge over four weeks.

In the virtual run that is like killing two birds with one stone – for fitness/health and funding needs –, eight participants set the bar high to contribute Shs18,000 ($5) for each kilometre they have taken throughout the challenge that is set to close on October 31.

 Runners raised the fund through individual contribution as well as support from families and friends through the donation portal set by the bank where contributors are required to log in to support a given runner in the cause.
The total contribution to be announced at the end of challenge will be doubled by the bank, according to Regina Mukiri, Stanchart head of corporate affairs, brand and marketing.

“As Ugandans, we joined our other 63 countries this month which is for employees to volunteer with their skills. We are mostly looking at the youth who are recovering from the impact of Covid-19 in terms of entrepreneurship and education and the bank will match any amount we come up with,” she said.

Some participants have cherished the run by taking additional kilometres hence raising more funds.
 Herman Kambugu, Stanchart manager for technology services, has already run 550km out of the 600 he intends to cover. The youthful manager took the initiative to cover 200km from Kampala to Hoima in two days so as to raise more funds for the cause.

 “I’m a runner by nature and I’m glad to run for a good cause. At first it was painful but I reminded myself that every kilometre that I run is contributing money to the community.  This kept me going. My target is 600km,’’ he said.
The run has also uplifted the physical and mental wellbeing of participants.
 “The run has improved my physical fitness and mental stability,” said Cynthia Mpanga, Stanchart corporate affairs manager.