Racing to raise funds for Smarter (from The Brunei Times)

Monday, March 28, 2011

ONE hundred runners raced for an hour to complete as many obstacles as possible for the Smarter Brunei Charity Race hosted by the Universiti Brunei Darussalam's radio club yesterday morning.

Fadhilah Hj Yahya, one of the organisers for the "Smarter Race" said there were 25 teams of four people each.

The "Smarter Race", was aimed to raise funds for the group specialising in aiding autistic individuals. "Basically, this is something like an 'Amazing Race', around the university campus," she told The Brunei Times.

She noted the aspects of the race taken from the popular reality television programme, highlighting various obstacles set up throughout the campus.

However, there was no set course, and participants from each team were free to choose from the eight various checkpoints scattered throughout the university. Each team had to complete as many of those obstacles as possible within the allotted time of an hour.

Fadhilah said the obstacles varied in nature, and required both strength and intellect from the participants, and that the harder the obstacles, the more points would be awarded for its completion.

The A-Team won first place, while Superfly and Team Courage secured the second and third spots, respectively.

Nurul Nabilah, one of the racers, said before the start of the event that she was a bit nervous. "We have no idea what will be in store for us," she told The Brunei Times.

"I am racing because I want to sweat for a good cause, and I know the money I contribute by participating will go to Smarter."

She said one of her family members has autism, "Even though he is a little kid, I am scared sometimes because he can get very aggressive. But in the end, I don't mind, and I hope to understand him better."

Various organisations also participated in setting up a variety of obstacles. Just behind the university's Central Lecture Theatre, the local Parkour association set up an obstacle course.

Brunei Scouts Association also set up their obstacles in the Bamboo garden, and another few minutes in the opposite direction was the Brunei Darussalam Aids Council's dance-a-long, which if failed, resulted in a costly penalty 'blind-maze' game.

There was also the Charity Bazaar, which aimed to raise funds for Smarter, with a portion of participating vendor's proceeds going towards the centre's operational cost.

"We heard about Smarter's need for funds, so we decided to take the opportunity to give back to the community," said Vice-Student Director of UBDFM Khairunnisa Ash'ari. "We hope to also raise awareness of Smarter itself, of what they do." The Brunei Times