Fitness group, Just Because Fitness (JBF), will support Ghana’s Women’s relay team at the World Relay Championships in Yokohama with an amount of $8000 that will go into covering some of the expenses of the four athletes.
Ghana’s women’s 4x100m relay team comprising of Flings Owusu-Agyapong, Persis William Mensah, Gemma Acheampong, and Hor Halutie, will be hoping to qualify for the World Athletics Championships in Doha later this year when they participate in the World Relays in Japan from May 11 to May 12.
JBF, an organisation which has continuously offered support to Ghanaian athletes such as Hor Halutie and Sarfo Ansah, have taken their commitment to Ghana athletics a notch higher with the latest gesture.
The donation will come as welcome news for the Ghana Athletics Association, who have had to scramble for funds to sponsor the girls’ participation in the championships, after they received no governmental support for the trip.
With the IAAF catering for the expenses of two members of the team, JBF’s donation is expected to take care of the full expenses (flights, accommodation) of the remaining two members, and their coach, Leo Myles-Mills.
“Sports is a great avenue for girls, boys men and women to realize their full potential and any support we can give to any athlete sets them on the right path to success,” Sara Asafu-Adjaye, Programs Director of JBF said.
“Athletics doesn’t always get a lot of support from the government so we reached out to some benevolent people who made very handsome donations.
“Eliza Olympio of JamRock Restaurant, Dedo Kofi of Adeko Limited, Lina Sowah of Tullow Oil, as well as US-based Gretchen Bauer and Kathy Swank have all made very generous contributions to this initiative and deserve credit.”
“We hope that this gesture will encourage other corporate bodies and individuals to follow suit with what I’d like to call ‘our patriotic duty’.”
About Just Because Fitness
JBF is made up of a group of sports enthusiasts who have established a reputation for providing key interventions that bring about a positive change to the lives of sports teams and individuals.
The group have in the past provided support for Ghana’s swimmers, the Dolphins, and in particular, swimmer Abeiku Jackson.
In 2018, they signed a partnership agreement with the Ghana Athletics Association to organize the GAA’s athletics circuits events.
They have supported Ghanaian sprinter Hor Halutie, since 2017, most recently, providing support for her 6-month training camp in the United States.
Ghana’s Women’s 4x100m Relay Team
The current composition of Ghana’s Women’s Relay Team has been together for at least 4 years. In July 2016, they set new National Record in the Soga-Nana Memorial Meet in Cape Coast with blistering time of 42.67 seconds. Three of the members of the Yokohama-bound team took part in that race, with Persis and Hor the only ones to not contribute to that little piece of history.
A disappointing 8th place finish (43.37 seconds) at the Rio 2016 Olympics was a marked step back by their own standards.
Still, they were well-primed for the 2017 World Relays in the Bahamas but Ghana failed to enter any team for the competition owing to financial difficulties. An appearance there could have taken them to the 2017 World Championships in London. Instead, the failure to compete in the Bahamas started a period of inactivity for the women’s relay team until they showed up in April 2018 at the Commonwealth Games.
A disappointing 5th place finish didn’t surprise many who had followed the team closely but their time of 43.64 seconds was what eventually qualified them for this year’s World Relays where they would be hoping to remind the world and the rest of Africa about their abilities.