JOSHUA CHEPTEGEI TRAINING CENTRE
The training centre, owned by world and Olympic gold medalist Joshua Cheptegei, is located in Kwoti Sub-county, Kapchorwa District, just more than a kilometer from the government’s high altitude training centre.
When Cheptegei started out in early 2013 all was not rosy and golden. Joshua trained on bumpy surfaces, suffered bruises to his ankles because he ran in poor grade running boots. but Lucky he was that the NN Running Team scouts from Global Sports Communications were in Kampala to spot and sign him up. When he ran a few more elite races and won money prizes, Joshua’s big dream was to give back to his community by supporting budding but disadvantaged young athletes on the road to stardom. To realize this noble dream, Joshua invested in land in Teryet, a great location for a high altitude Training Centre on the fringes of Mt Elgon National Park.
Piece by piece, Joshua has now consolidated more than 15 acres of land for the project. To further actualize this dream, Mr Cheptegei through the Joshua Cheptegei Development Foundation in partnership with telecom giant MTN, Rockman Safaris, and UTB, Rocket Health, Outcome Communications, The Nation Media Group in Uganda, and Boundless Minds, among others, are spearheading a fundraiser for a top-notch high-altitude training complex for athletes at Kwoti in Kapchorwa District. The training complex aims to save athletes the hassle of travelling to Kenya to train at state-of- the art sports facilities. The training complex also aims to develop the next generation of athletics stars through talent hunt and identification through the annual Joshua Chepetegei Development Foundation Christmas Run.
The proposed training and high performance facility will target world-class standards and will be made up of: A standard running track, a gym, accommodation/lodging facilities for local and international athletes, a sports museum, administrative building, dining hall, sports medical centre, camping site and an agro-tourism extension. So far, the facility construction and development has already started with a standard running track, startup accommodation for athletes and a basic gymnasium.
The overall target status is a world-class running track, an accommodation of up to 50 people, world-class sports gym equipment with top athlete equipment, a sports medical centre with sports diagnostic equipment, a camping site for up to 100 people and an agro-tourism extension that will provide supplies for the training centre, its guests and/or surrounding communities.
This dream is achievable because Uganda’s successes with both young and experienced talents has been manifest, including Boniface Kiprop, Moses Kipsiro, Stephen Kiprotich, Dorcas Inzikuru, Stella Chesang, and Halima Nakayi, shows there is no doubt that Uganda has a great pool of untapped talents. This noble initiative aims to afford young Ugandan talents world-class sporting high-altitude sporting facilities and upgrade Uganda to a competitive athletic and sporting level with our celebrated neighbours Kenya and Ethiopia, whose dominance Uganda has consistently cut into and sometimes surpassing them.
Kapchorwa has, over the years, consistently been the source of majority of Uganda’s elite athletes including John Akibua, Boniface Kiprop, Moses Kipsiro, Stephen Kiprotich, Dorcas Inzikuru, and Stella Chesang. There’s, therefore, no doubt that the region possesses the genetic as well as high performance precedence that needs harnessing for top results.
- Presently, most upcoming athletes in Uganda do not have access to high quality training grounds and as such, have to travel to Kenya or other countries to access them. This makes it very expensive for many and even unaffordable for most.
- The complex aims to save athletes the hassle of travelling to Kenya or other world athletic training centres to train at their state-of-the art sports facilities. They will, upon completion of the facility, be able to access and utilize the home-grown world class facility to prepare for local, regional and world events.
- The training complex also aims to develop the next generation of athletics stars through talent hunt and identification through the annual Joshua Chepetegei Development Foundation Christmas run.
- This innovative project fits within Uganda’s National Development Plan III (NDPIII) of 2020/2021– 2024/2025). This path-breaking sports project will address Uganda’s problem of human capital, which 5-year NDPIII indicates is marked by both low labour productivity and low human development. The Joshua Cheptegei sports centre seeks to address this problem of weak foundation for human capital, lack of appropriate knowledge skills and attitudes, and weak talent and sports nurturing.
- The sports centre will seek to build Uganda’s sports and physical education as critical skills mix and are key in addressing youth unemployment. This is why more investment is required to finance the Joshua Chepetegei sports complex to meet NDPIII’s objectives to promote sports, recreation, and physical education through talent identification, development, and professionalization.
- Similarly, the foundation will provide positive effect by providing state-of-the art facilities for use by sports coaches, administrators, and technical officials across the country.
- Through exchange and collaborative program with other regional and international sports centres, the Joshua Cheptegei Training centre will foster and build international relations with other countries and build avenues for skills and knowledge transfer.
- The Joshua Cheptegei training centre will also provide a prototype for local and regional sports-focused sports academies to support early talent identification, development, and training of requisite human resources for the sports sub-sector.
GOALS & OBJECTIVES:
- Build a state-of-the-art athletics training and development centre in Kapchorwa to be a centre of excellence in sports and human development in the local community, Uganda, East Africa and the world.
- Identify and nurture raw and budding sports talent in Uganda and the region and build them for the global stage.
- Use sports and sports personalities to grow Uganda’s image as a world tourism attraction globally.
- Groom the next global stars
- Develop a one-stop centre museum
- Conduct community drives to scout, train and develop the next generation of athletics stars
- Use athletics talents to uplift Uganda’s low labour productivity and low human capital development
- Use sport as s a vehicle to attract and host athletes from Uganda, the region and across the globe