Skip to main content
December 12, 2018

Granny Nduku in a race to set up first children referral hospital in Eldoret.

64-year-old athlete Joyce Nduku during a past marathon race
64-year-old athlete Joyce Nduku during a past marathon race
Miss Joyce Nduku, popularly known as ‘Nduku Tata’ is a lady on a mission, and unlike many people, no road blocks or misfortunes would ever stop her or slow her down.
The 64-year-old marathon granny who at her age has probably achieved what most young people haven’t or will probably not be able to, if they do not step out of their comfort zones. The lady with a ‘golden heart’ and hunger to make this world a better place, surprisingly started participating in marathons at the age of 50 and has since taken part and successfully completed over 20 marathons both locally and internationally—all for a noble cause. In an interview, a lively Nduku revealed that she never knew what started as a precaution to a health scare, would soon turn as a calling to help the less fortunate in the society.
It all started when one day she could not walk down up her stair cases and she was scared that she was suffering from arthritis. She took it as a wake up call and at 50, she decided to do morning runs for fitness purposes. In 2004, she decided to try out the Nairobi Marathon and after successfully completing the 21km run, she has never looked back again— 14-years later.
After completing some of the renown races like— Lewa Marathon, Kigali Peace race, Boston Marathon, the ever-green marathoner challenged herself in the annual Comrades Marathon in South Africa over the weekend. Her sole purpose and goal was to to raise over Sh5milllion for a new cancer ward in Eldoret. “I started running at the age of 50 in 2004 and I have run for the last 14 years,” she said.
“What pushed me into running was that I had a painful knee sometime back in 2002 and I was not able to walk up the stair cases. I could not also squat and the fear of getting arthritis pushed me into running. I went to try running and I started with the Nairobi Standard Chartered Marathon in 2004. After painfully running the 21-km race, that became the genesis of it all,” she added.
What other marathons has she participated in and for what purpose?
“I have participated in so many marathons both locally and internationally, most of which I have found myself in the front line. “I did Chicago Marathon in 2008, Kigali Peace race and MTN in Uganda. “I’ve also done Kilimanjaro Marathon, Lewa, Sotokoto and Mwea Classic, which I am very passionate about.
“As much as I run for fitness sake, my greatest joy is to make a difference in people’s lives because every drop of sweat that breaks while I am running, I know it goes to someone who is in dire need of something. The Comrades Marathon is the world’s largest and oldest ultra marathon race which is run annually in the KwaZulu-Natal Province of South Africa between the cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg (90km). Nduku is appealing to Kenyans from all walks of life to support her financially in her dream to see Kenya put up it’s first children referral hospital in Eldoret.
Poll of the day