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Running for a Cause: Serena Hotels to Organize Hunza Marathon on 9th June

Serena Hotels in collaboration with Aga Khan Social Welfare Board for Pakistan (AKSWBP), Pakistan Youth Outreach (PYO) & Z-Adventures is set to organize the Hunza Marathon on 9th June in Central Hunza. The marathon is aimed to create awareness against substance abuse, a rising concern among young men in the region.

Imran Ahmed Hunzai

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Hunza Marathon 2016

Serena Hotels in collaboration with Aga Khan Social Welfare Board for Pakistan (AKSWBP), Pakistan Youth Outreach (PYO) & Z-Adventures is set to organize the Hunza Marathon on 9th June in Karimabad Hunza. The marathon is aimed to create awareness against substance abuse, a rising concern among young men in the region.

The marathon would be one of its kind with more than 20 international runners participating along with 200 other local and national enthusiasts. The event will start at 4:30 AM from Zero Point in Karimabad. The marathon has been divided into four distance based categories – 5K, 10K, Half Marathon and Full Marathon.

Ziyad Rahim, who is the key figure behind Hunza Marathon, holds 10 Guinness World Records. He is also the founder of a Qatar based sports travel company called Z-Adventures.

Zaiyad Rahim with Samina Baig and Mirza Ali

Zaiyad Rahim with Samina Baig and Mirza Ali

Earlier in June while talking to a news blog he said:

“It has always been my dream to organise a running event in Pakistan. A few years back during my 7 continents ultra-marathon challenge, on my way back from Antarctica, I met up with Mirza Ali and Samina Baig in Chile.”

“They both had just returned from Antarctica after summiting Mt. Vinson Massif. Since they were based in Hunza, I asked them if it would be possible to arrange an event and they both agreed.”

He added:

“I am looking forward to seeing everyone enjoy themselves and embrace this new sport. It is a sport that does not require any major investment.”

“So whether you are young or old, rich or poor, all can be part of the event and can run, walk or even crawl to the finish line.”

The second phase of Hunza Marathon will be held on 10th June down the hill from Khunjerab Pass at the PAK-China border.

The 10K race will start at a height of 15,400ft above sea level which is why it is only meant for pro-runners.

Ziyad Rahim hopes to continue the campaign under the banner of Pakistan Running Series which has been established by Z-Adventures.

Imran Hunzai is a Digital Media Consultant and activist based in Islamabad, Pakistan. When free, he likes to travel, do photography and play Rabab. He also runs a HONY inspired blog called Humans of Hunza. Follow him of Twitter @ihunzai.

Environment

Nestlé Pakistan to recycle 220,000 kgs of plastic waste in Hunza

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Nestlé Pakistan Clean Hunza Valley campaign
Photo: DC Hunza Office

NestlĂ© Pakistan, District Council Hunza, Gilgit-Baltistan Waste Management Company (GBWMC) and Karakoram Area Development Organization (KADO) have signed an MOU for “Clean Hunza Project”. The project is supported by the company’s NESTLÉ FRUITA VITALS and NESTLÉ PURE LIFE brands.

“Clean Hunza Project” shall focus on infra structure development for a waste segregation, management and recycling system for Hunza – a popular tourist destination – with District Council Hunza, GBWMC and support from KADO for raising awareness in the communities.

The collective action initiative will encourage waste management of 150,000 kgs of plastics annually in Phase I, followed by collection of 50,000 kgs paper packaging (used beverage cartons) in Phase II in the area with an increase of 10% annually.

Nestlé Pakistan Clean Hunza Valley campaign

The Project’s focus shall be on the segregation of Plastics and paper packaging at the waste site which, after the compressing and bailing process, shall be brought down the country for recycling. NestlĂ© Pakistan shall provide a compressing and bailing unit to the Hunza district government. The company will also be distributing 10,000 reusable bags in the community during 2020 as part of the project. KADO will extend support for different community awareness activities.

Waqar Ahmad, Head of Corporate Affairs, NestlĂ© Pakistan, while highlighting the company’s global commitment to tackle plastic waste, said, “This project marks the beginning of NestlĂ© Pakistan’s journey to reduce the environmental impact of plastic packaging by improving the management and recycling of various kinds of plastic packaging, in line with UN SDGs. Globally we aim to make 100% of our packaging recyclable and reusable by 2025.”

He further added, “The Clean Hunza Project is a pilot project with a focus on streamlining the management and recycling of plastic waste, with a forecast of increasing waste collection to 220,000 kgs by 2024. This project will result in lesser plastic ending up in water bodies downstream.”

Commending the cause, Babar Sahibdin, Deputy Commissioner Hunza District, said, “We applaud support from NestlĂ© for providing us with 10,000 reusable bags, which will create awareness amongst the locals to stop using plastic bags and incline them towards a more environmentally friendly solution. We appreciate Nestlé’s for providing the Compressor, Bailing and Recycling infrastructure and capacity building of our staff on waste segregation site.”

Talking about the initiative, Ghulam Mustafa, Chairman KADO said, “We fully support District Government Hunza and NestlĂ© Pakistan partnership and are proud to collaborate with them in reaching our shared goals.”

About Nestlé Pakistan

NestlĂ© is the world’s largest food and beverage company. It is present in 191 countries around the world, and its 328,000 employees are committed to Nestlé’s purpose of enhancing quality of life and contributing to a healthier future. NestlĂ© offers a wide portfolio of products and services for people and their pets throughout their lives. NestlĂ© Pakistan is also a signatory of “Clean Green Pakistan” initiative.

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Blogs

In Pictures: His Highness Aga Khan’s First Visit to Hunza in 1960

Imran Ahmed Hunzai

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Aga Khan in Hunza 1960
Photos: Abdul M. Ismaily

On this day in 1960, His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan made his historic first visits to Hunza and laid down the foundation of what we know as a model valley today. Since then, Hunza has come a long way and developed into a model valley for many. Every year on 23rd October, Ismailis of Hunza Valley celebrate this day as “Salgirah” to commemorate Aga Khan’s visit to Hunza for the first time.

During the first visit of His Highness Aga Khan to Hunza, photographer Abdul M. Ismaily took numerous photos that remained unseen for decades. However, in 2016, Simerg Photos released a number of pictures of this historic visit with the permission of Abdul M. Ismaily’s family.

On this happy occasion for the Ismailis of Hunza, GBee is pleased to share some of the photographs from Aga Khan’s first visit to Hunza in 1960.

Attached by pulley to the third cable was a wooden box, five feet square, with sides rising 18 inches. This was the only way to Hunza. The five journalists which included two Americans were horrified, and despite urging from Pir Ali Allana, the Aga Khan’s advance man, none would get into the box. Far across the river, men pulled on a rope, and, swaying and shaking, the box shot out over the swift-flowing stream of Hunza River. Today, the Nasirabad Bridge stands in this place.
Ismaili Volunteers with community leaders during the preparations to receive H.H. The Aga Khan at Baltit Polo Ground in Karimabad, Hunza.
Col. Ayash Khan, the brother of Mir Jamal Khan, the last royal ruler of Hunza, is seen standing in a uniform with members of the royal family of Hunza outside the royal palace in Hunza where His Highness the Aga Khan resided during his visit in 1960.
Aga Khan first visit to Hunza Valley 1960
Aga Khan in Hunza 1960

H.H. Aga Khan in conversation with Mir of Hunza.
Aga Khan in Hunza 1960
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