Inspired by ub-cool’s co-founder and CEO Medina Ilyassova – an epilepsy survivor- the ub-cool team will take part in the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon on January 27th 2017, to raise money for epileptics in Ethiopia.

Medina Ilyassova and her ub-cool team of seventeen runners are undertaking the challenge of the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon to create awareness of epilepsy and to help support the Society for the Advancement of Epilepsy Research which is run by Professor Christian Elger of the University of Bonn.

Epilepsy can affect anyone, at any age and from any walk of life. Each year, 200,000 people worldwide are diagnosed and in two-thirds of patients diagnosed, the cause is unknown. Suffered by 65 million people around the globe, it is the 4th most common neurological condition.

Having been the victim of epileptic bouts for over 14 years, ub-cool’s co-founder Medina Ilyassova knows the strength it takes to deal with and overcome the condition. After suffering from uncontrollable seizures, she underwent risky brain surgery two years ago. Now enjoying life epilepsy-free, Ilyassova’s lifelong goal is to raise awareness and educate society about this condition. On the 27th January 2017 she will lead her 17-strong team to conquer a new challenge.

Ilyassova says, “Epileptics are the same as you and me; they go to school, they have families and jobs. Yet in many countries in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, Epilepsy is often treated as a mental disorder and epileptics are stigmatised in their own societies. We want to communicate a message that epileptics are normal people, who need every bit of medical support so that they can overcome all challenges posed by their condition and lead normal lives. The Al Mouj Muscat Marathon is a high profile sporting event that provides the perfect platform for engaging awareness about the condition. By promoting the cause at an international level we want to make a real difference with our sponsorship contribution.”

The Al Mouj Muscat Marathon, which takes place annually, is one of Oman’s most anticipated events. There are distances to fit all ability levels, including the 42.2 km full marathon, a 21 km half marathon, and the 10K run.

By participating in the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon, Ilyassova and her team are supporting the head of the Epileptology Department at University of Bonn, Professor Christian Elger. Alongside his medical research, the Professor’s charity foundation exists to support epileptic patients and educate medical staff in Ethiopia.

One million people in Ethiopia are diagnosed with active epilepsy, yet currently fewer than 5% of these sufferers are receiving adequate treatment. When available, appropriate epilepsy treatment successfully controls most symptoms and leads to remission in at least 70% of cases.

Speaking about his foundation, Professor Elger said, “Our aim is to improve the epilepsy-service in a poor country in which medical insurance is non-existent and patients cannot afford to go abroad. We want to do this by training staff here in Bonn and in Ethiopia.”

By participating in Al Mouj Muscat’s Marathon, Ilyassova and the ub-cool team hope to inspire others to find the strength to overcome their personal obstacles and embrace a new endurance challenge. Oman, Australia, Portugal, Jordan and Scotland are amongst the nations represented by the international ub-cool team. All members are united by their enthusiasm for adventurous travel pursuits, as well as their commitment to enabling the advancement of research for such an incapacitating medical condition. With less than three weeks to go, there’s no better time to pledge your support of the team and support the epilepsy research foundation. Sponsorship donations can be made directly, simply by visiting www.ub-cool.com/donate.