tendai simbai.jpgA Zimbabwean athlete based in the United Kingdom, Tendai Simbai has embarked on a 128-kilometre fundraising marathon in London.

Tendai said the funds will go towards agricultural education, helping to purchase sufficient seeds and farming equipment to allow disadvantaged Zimbabwean children to be taught to grow and care for their own crops.

This will provide a meal for every child, every day, and teach them how to sell on what remains – crucial skills for their futures. These projects will help the children survive today, and give them hope for tomorrow.

And when the 32-year-old Zimbabwean finished his sponsored 20-hour run at 10pm on Saturday night he said he felt “good and “proud” of himself.

The seven-foot-tall former basketball player said: “There were times when it was very hard, especially in the last hour. At Colchester I was finding it difficult but I was very lucky to have my support team with me.

He added: “They were with me every step of the way and this is our achievement.”

The money raised by Tendai’s triple marathon is still being calculated but every last penny will be going to the Zimbabwe Benefit Foundation.

Motivating Tendai are the children he met on a trip to Zimbabwe last year.

He is hoping to help these youngsters with his fundraising efforts and the poverty they face on a daily basis motivated him during his epic journey.

He said: “I thought of them and how hard things are for them and said to myself ‘I have to do this’. I want to help make things better for them and show them anything is possible.

“These kids go home and they have no food,” he added.

“If you see how little these kids have, you realise running three marathons is nothing.”

Nick Drane, Tendai’s best friend, was part of his support team which was with him throughout the entire run.

The two men have been friends since Tendai moved to Suffolk nine years ago.

He said: “When Tendai said he was going to do this my first thought was that this could be a remarkable achievement. And if anyone could do it, it would be Tendai.

“During the run, there were times when he was finding it difficult and that was hard to watch but he just kept saying ‘I have to do this’, over and over.

He added: “Of course he did it. We are so proud but not surprised. It’s such an achievement.”

Tendai has so far raised over US$4 300.00 towards the cause.