Introducing Anjelina Nadai Lohalith, the refugee track runner aiming for her second Olympics

The South Sudan born athlete was selected for the IOC Refugee Olympic Team at Rio 2016 and is one of IOC Refugee Athlete Scholarship-holders hoping to compete at the Tokyo 2020 Games in 2021.

2 min By Olympic Channel
Anjelina Portrait_1

Anjelina Nadai Lohalith was one of the 10 athletes representing the first-ever IOC Refugee Olympic Team at Rio 2016.

The South Sudan born track runner failed to advance from round 1 of the 1,500m event in Brazil, but - as an IOC Refugee Athlete Scholarship-holder - hopes to have another chance at the Tokyo 2020 Games in 2021.

She also competed at the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London as part of the World Athletics refugee team, recording her personal best over the distance (4:33.54).

Since her participation in Rio, Anjelina has become a mother and has travelled to Uganda and Canada where she attended the One Young World Summit in Ottawa, a global forum for youth leaders who discuss global issues.

© 2016 - Comité International Olympique (CIO) - THOMAS, ClairePHO10912653.retouche
© 2016 - Comité International Olympique (CIO) - THOMAS, ClairePHO10912653.retouche

In 2002, the middle-distance runner fled war-torn South Sudan to the Kakuma refugee camp in northern Kenya along with her aunt.

"Everything was destroyed," she told the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) back in 2016.

She hasn't met her parents since, and her main motivation has been to reunite with her family again.

"If I go far and [have] success, then my dream is just only to help my parents," she said.

Anjelina used to participate in running competitions during high school until she was selected by the Tegla Loroupe Foundation to train in Ngong, just outside Kenya's capital Nairobi.

The Rio 2016 Olympian was also one of the young athletes joining the Mentoring Program of the 'Sport at the Service of Humanity' Foundation.

In 2018 she took part at the 'Olympism in Action Forum', organised by the International Olympic Committee during the Summer Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires.

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