Energy and excitement filled the air as Samaritan Scholars, families, and friends gathered to participate in the IntSam Global 5K last weekend. It was a joy-filled experience here in Ethiopia where stories were shared, prayers were offered, and laughter echoed throughout.

One remarkable moment of the race came when our very own scholar Mihertu crossed the finish line with a breathtaking time of 13:33setting him up to be the global champion for the fourth straight year. (I keep telling Mike that Ethiopia is faster than Kenya!)

Mihertu’s achievement exemplified not only his outstanding athletic talent but also the transformative power of a holistic scholarship. Before joining the scholarship program, Mihertu used to pick up food from the Kore garbage dump to sustain himself for his running endeavors. His lack of food at times caused him to faint while running.

Ethiopia scholars

Mihertu, (second from left) and other Samaritan Scholars in Ethiopia have been training for the IntSam Global 5K.

However, after becoming a Samaritan Scholar, his life took a remarkable turn. Four years ago, he learned about International Samaritan and was awarded a scholarship with us, becoming a 16-year-old fifth-grader. For the first time in his life, he had a consistent and healthy source of food and a chance to go to school.
Mihretu never stopped running. He stands as a shining example of resilience and determination, rising above adversity to achieve greatness. 


Mihertu crossed the finish line in Ethiopia with a breathtaking time of 13:33! 

As we reflect on this memorable Global 5K, let us continue to celebrate the accomplishments of scholars like Mihertu and the countless others who have been empowered through education and comprehensive supportand let’s give more to help them. Together, we can uplift and inspire the next generation to reach their fullest potential and make a lasting impact in their communities and beyond.

A Truly Global Event

At the same time as the Ethiopia 5K on October 28, races were taking place in the USA (Ann Arbor and Detroit, Michigan), Guatemala, Jamaica, and Kenya. Races have also occurred, or will soon be taking place, in Honduras, Uganda, and the USA (Lansing and Brighton, Michigan; Toledo and Columbus, Ohio).

You can view the race results and donate toward the team goals on our race website. Together, we can make it across the finish line and fund scholarships for 50 children.

Ann Arbor

In Ann Arbor, individuals raced along with teams from St. Francis Assisi, St. Mary Student Parish, and the University of Michigan.


In Detroit, high school students from Marian, Loyola, and the University of Detroit Jesuit competed.


The Ethiopia team gathered in the evening so that their race could be held at the same time as the USA races, which started at 10:30 am EST.


Despite the political unrest in their country, Samaritan Scholars and team members in Guatemala were able to compete in the 5K.


Scholars in Honduras, along with a team from Grace Community Church in Detroit, ran the Global 5K this week.


“As usual, the younger scholars ran rings around most of us,” said Sonja Robinson, Program Director. Scholars in Jamaica raised $850 toward their team goal!


This was Kenya’s first year in the race and three of their runners are currently in the top 10 (much to Selam’s chagrin). 

Selam Terefe, Regional Director, East Africa

Selam has years of experience in international development and aid. Her education and career have given her a thorough and in-depth knowledge of gender, legal, social, and political issues of East Africa with a special focus on Ethiopia. Over the years, she has demonstrated skills in project management, research, leadership, monitoring and evaluation, and diplomacy. Selam is passionate about development in Africa and a strong believer in effective partnerships.

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