The Lebanese Organization of Studies and Training (LOST), in partnership with UNICEF, organized its fourth annual marathon in Baalbeck, entitled “Traffic Safety”, in which over four thousand Lebanese and Syrian students from public and private schools participated, from all over Baalbeck-Hermel. The participants ranged from different age groups. In addition, members of the army and internal security forces, founder of LOST, Dr. Ramy Lakkis, and UNICEF representative, Mr. Cesar Fakih participated in the race as well. The race was initiated from Douris, and ended at Ras El Ain street, in which participants ran for three kilometers.
Initiating the festive marathon, a musical band, comprised of students from the “Message through Arts Training” (MAT) program played the Lebanese national anthem. The MAT program is part of UNICEF’s youth program, where students have been training for three months prior to performing at the marathon. To the tunes of national songs and folklore, participants danced and sang in the pool area at the starting point, expressing their joy at this sporting event. Additionally, volunteers from UNICEF’s WASH program were on site spreading awareness about sorting, and continuously encouraged the participants to not leave their trash on the streets.
Dr. Rami Lakkis stressed the importance of raising awareness about traffic safety in Baalbeck-Hermel, which has the highest traffic accident rate in Lebanon. He called on the participants to shoulder their responsibilities towards their safety and the safety of others. “When we work to mitigate these traffic incidents and to reduce casualties, we have won”, concluded Dr. Lakkis, prior to handing out the trophies to the winners of the marathon.