Our ambassador Tadesse Abraham.

In this interview, the top athlete talks about how he became such a good runner.

Tadesse Abraham is the fastest marathon runner in Switzerland and an ambassador for the Generali Running Family. He is a role model and advocate for young athletes.

Tadesse, when did you know that you wanted to be a professional marathon runner?

A friend of mine took part in the European Championships. When I saw him on TV, I wondered whether that could also be me. Whether there was anything stopping me from also trying to qualify. That’s when I first felt the urge to try. So I said to myself: it's possible. Anything is possible if I work hard.


Tell us a little more about yourself.

I came to Uster in Switzerland in 2004 as a refugee when I was 22. Everything here was very alien to me. I didn’t speak any German and I didn’t know anything about Swiss culture. It was very difficult to introduce myself, to try and approach people and make friends. So I said to myself that I really needed to integrate as quickly as possible, learn the language and adapt to this new culture. Because integration is key.


How did you go about it?

Running allowed me to connect with the local people and learn about Swiss culture and customs. That helped a lot. When you arrive in a new country as a refugee, you don’t know anyone. And you don’t know how things work. At first, I didn’t know where to go.

I often trained alone or with a friend at Uster stadium. I was very lucky, because that’s how I got to know members of the LC Uster. At the time, it was really important to me to have other people by my side. People to help me, motivate me and show me what is possible and how things are done. And that’s exactly what the club did for me. I will never be able to thank them enough – LC Uster will forever be my favourite club. Without running, I would not have been able to settle in Switzerland as quickly and easily as I did. Running has been key to my integration into Switzerland.

What would you like to achieve as a Generali Running Family member?

I want to help other members find their way. I want to be their “big brother” and offer support and encouragement. I will always be there for them.


What message would you like to give to young people?

My motto: “Everything is possible if you’re 100% committed. You just have to believe in it and give it your all.”

Tadesse Abraham

Tadesse Abraham

Professional runner and Generali ambassador

Tadesse was European Half Marathon Champion in 2016 and finished seventh for Switzerland at the Olympic Games in Rio. In 2018, he won the silver medal for the marathon distance at the European Championships in Berlin and finished ninth at the World Athletics Championships in Doha in 2019.