A group of 25 challengers from major transport and logistics organisations have joined forces for a gruelling fundraising cycling challenge across Madagascar in aid of international development charity Transaid, which aims to improve people’s quality of life in the developing world by making transport more available and affordable.
The 25 participants in Cycle Madagascar - representing major organisations including the CILT, DHL, GKN Freight Services, Hankook Tyres, Michelin, Mike Mundy Associations, PS-PPP Consult, Simms Recycling Solutions, Transport Exchange Group, Transport for London, United Biscuits, Volvo Truck, Wincanton and Woodland Global - will set off on their 500 km challenge at the end of this week (15 June 2012) in a bid to raise £100,000.
Transaid events manager Aggie Krasnolucka-Hickman said: "The challengers are extremely excited and raring to get going on their challenging trip. They’ve been working flat-out to train and meet their fundraising objectives."
The five-day ride will see them cover an average of 90km a day across a range of terrains, from smooth tarmac in the cities to pothole-ridden roads in remote locations – passing through villages and rice paddies as they go.
In Madagascar, flooding in remote parts of the country can leave communities cut off for up to 10 months of the year, with little or no access to transport. By providing better transport solutions on the Indian Ocean island, child and maternal mortality rates can be reduced, for example.
Proceeds from the event will not just go to Madagascar, but will benefit vital Transaid initiatives across the whole of Africa.
Supporting the challengers in-country is International Container Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI), which has made a generous donation to help fund Transaid’s work and is also covering the cost of internal flights. Bosses at ICTSI have also arranged a mid-cycle visit to the Port of Toamasina – its own major logistics terminal.
Narlene Soriano, head of public relations at ICTSI, says: "Transaid’s work in Madagascar and across the developing world is helping to save lives and improve quality of living in some of our remotest communities.
"We salute Transaid’s commitment, and look forward to welcoming the challengers from the UK, whose hard work is set to benefit a very worthwhile charity."