The KwaZulu-Natal Herd of The Cows have been given the green light to stampede the upcoming Charity Challenge Relay in Hillcrest on Heritage Day Tuesday, 24th September and plan to make their typically boisterous mark on the family-orientated event.
Started last year the team relay fun run involved each participant running a flat and easy five kilometre lap around Hillcrest High School before handing the team baton to the next runner.
Each runner can nominate their chosen beneficiary from the six official charities, which the CHOC Cows have joined for the first time alongside Highway Hospice, the Hillcrest AIDS Centre, LIV Durban, Project Rhino and Rotary International.
“It is a double-edged fun day on the Heritage Day public holiday,” said race director Barry Holland. “It is a festive day aimed at corporates and families, with corporate tents set up around the venue and we aim to make it a lot of fun.
“At the same time it is a great way to raise money for each of these six very deserving charities, and we are thrilled to have the CHOC Cows on board this year.
“I know The Cows all too well from other events like the Comrades,” he said. “I know it will be festive and noisy, which will be marvellous.”
“FUNdraising is what we do best,” said Iris Varty, one of The Cows KZN Herd conveners.
“The school is one of the pillars of the Hillcrest community and Heritage Day is very close to all of our hearts. We plan to get as many teams of The Cows out on the day to enjoy the relay vibe and do our bit for kids battling with cancer.
“We expect a number of the regular Cows to be running, and also see this easy and fun event as a great way to get new people to join the Herd,” she added.
“We like to have fun but we are also competitive – when it comes to fundraising!” she added. “We want to win the race for top fundraiser.”
She said that anyone keen to run in the famous Cow kit will be eligible to do so if they raise R6000.
“Each entry costs R200 and then each runner gets an online platform to raise funds. If anyone gets to the R6000 mark we would be thrilled to recognise that by getting them Cow kit to run in,” she explained.
Varty said that the Cows in KZN can be contacted through their Facebook page The Cows – KZN Herd or the website www.thecows.co.za.
About the Cows
The Cows were started in 2008 by a group of eight enthusiastic cyclists keen to make a difference and raise funds for the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa. Cordi van Niekerk was one of the founder members and joined Kerrin and Grant Bain in cycling the 947 Cycle Challenge in memory of their daughter, Jessica, who had recently died from cancer at just 20 months old.
As CHOC had played a significant role in the Bain family’s life in the last few weeks of Jessica’s life, specifically with palliative care and emotional support, the decision was to make CHOC the beneficiary of their quest. They decided to don cow suits and succeeded in raising R230 000.
In 2009, the herd gained momentum and grew to 140 energetic cows. Just two years later the herd numbered a staggering 350 cows all riding for a purpose. Armed with the ‘Love Living Life’ slogan and a healthy dose of enthusiasm, the herd has enjoyed much success and acclaim.
Ten years later, hundreds of people have participated in events wearing cow suits. The Cows have raised well over R30 million for specific projects implemented by CHOC and The Cows brand is prominent in many sporting events in South Africa. With these funds, CHOC is able to make a difference to the children being treated for cancer throughout South Africa.
One herd; one quest: to make a difference to children with cancer. Love Living Life!
Photo 1 Caption: “We expect a number of the regular Cows to be running in the Charity Relay Challenge, and also see this easy and fun event as a great way to get new people to join the Herd,” said Iris Varty (right) the KZN Herd Daisy. Photo: Gameplan Media
With editing by gsport