The 2018 Trinidad and Tobago International Marathon (TTIM) organisers are encouraging competitors to participate in the fight against diabetes when the 36th edition of the event takes place on the weekend of January 20 and 21.

The weekend’s activities will begin with the 5K event on January 20, followed by the marathon and the marathon relay on January 21.

The marathon relay is a popular event which includes school relay teams, clubs and corporate teams.

Andrew Dhanoo, first vice-president of the Diabetes Association of TT, said the aim of the marathon this year is to bring awareness to diabetes and encourage more healthy lifestyles. At a press conference at the TT Olympics House yesterday, Dhanoo said, “The Diabetes Association of Trinidad and Tobago is pleased to work with the TTIM in this initiative this year,” Dhanoo said. “We are trying to elicit a change in Trinidad and Tobago and we are trying to encourage a culture shift, where by we are trying to encourage children and families to be more active. A 5K such as this we are asking people who are living with diabetes out there to be part of the 5K to come and try to run.”

Dhanoo said about 200,000 in TT live with diabetes.

Dhanoo said child obesity is a concern in TT and they are hoping that the event will help reduce the number of obese people in the country.

The Kiss Baking Company will also play an active role in the event next year. Sarah Jones, a representative of Kiss, said the company would encourage healthy eating by providing samples of their products.

“On race day we will be set up to offer samples of our healthy lifestyle products and look forward to hundreds taking part in the 2018 edition. Again it is a pleasure for us to be involved and we look forward to an event that includes the entire family.”

Diane Henderson, chairperson of the TTIM said past winners Leah Kigen of Kenya and Juan Carlos Cardona of Colombian are expected to attend, while a popular marathon will also attend. Henderson said, “We are going to get winners returning that is Leah Kigen and Juan Carlos, they will be here. We have an interesting runner who has registered for the race which is Sidy Diallo.”

Diallo, a French Diplomat, has ran 164 marathon and ultra marathons across the seven continents competing in a number of them bare feet.

Interested participants can visit for registration details.