The poverty levels in the Sebei sub-region, range between 50% and 70% according to a 2020 report by Development Initiatives.
As a result of that, the levels of illiteracy remain high. However, the world 5000 and 10000 metres record holder has started his foundation, dubbed the ‘Joshua Cheptegei Foundation’, whose major objective is to help his local communities reduce the illiteracy levels.
On Saturday, February 20, MTN Uganda extended a Shs 100 million sponsorship package to Cheptegei’s foundation for the next one year. During the unveiling of the sponsorship, Cheptegei said that he felt driven by the need to help those that were deprived, and he considered MTN’s intervention timely.
“So many children in the community I come from do not go to school, yet they want to. The problem is that their families cannot afford to. That is why I have decided to set up a foundation to help where I can.”
Already, Cheptegei said, he has been supporting 10 children, to go to school. But with the MTN support, he believes the number can increase tremendously to at least 40 to 50 children.
In light of that, Wim Vanhelleputte, the CEO of MTN Uganda said that after Cheptegei won the 5km race in Monaco on February 14, they instituted an online voting platform, where the public were asked to vote on what prize MTN needed to give him for his recent feat.
Cheptegei said that the ultimate purpose of his foundation is to extend training in life and entrepreneurial skills to young people.