Bega solicitor Andrew Warren is pumping up the tires ready for a cross-country bicycle ride – in Tanzania!
In February 2019, Mr Warren plans to ride the length of the African country, alone and unsupported, to raise funds for the School of St Jude in Arusha, Tanzania.
All up, the ride covers about 1600km.
“If you agree to sponsor me, you will get your money back if I do not pedal every kilometre of the way – I promise!” Mr Warren said on his GoFundMe page.
Since only launching his fundraising page on Wednesday, December 5, he has already raised more than $2500 of his $3000 stated goal.
“If I can raise $3000 from sponsors of my ride, that will pay for a student to receive an education for a year,” Mr Warren said.
Mr Warren said St Jude’s provides a free, non-demoninational, high-quality education to children who, due to poverty and social pressures, would otherwise be unlikely to complete their schooling.
“I made contact with Gemma Sisia [the school’s founder] about 15 years ago – she’s an amazing woman,” Mr Warren said this week.
“She started the school with mud bricks and three children. Now it’s three campuses with 1800 children.
“We sponsored some kids at the school years ago and then this year we visited the school on a family holiday.
“It costs only $3000 a year to sponsor a student and for they St Jude’s provides full board, uniforms, all meals, books and pencils and so on.
“Every single one of their students was chosen because they combined academic promise with a desperately poor background and a great attitude to work. They feed them, house them, educate them, and do everything possible to ensure their students’ wellbeing and future success.”
Mr Warren said he could ride anywhere in order to raise some money for the school and its students, “but it seemed more appropriate to go back to Tanzania”.
He heads out on February 8 – “it’s all booked in so I can’t back out now!”
“I’m not a competitive rider, just your typical middle aged man in lycra. I just enjoy going for a ride.”
Mr Warren said he hoped to find guest houses along the route, but given the African country’s landscape that may not always be possible.
“So I’m packing a tent but maybe I will need to hang a sign on it saying ‘Lions not welcome’,” he joked.
To support Mr Warren’s fundraising and epic cycle, click here
For more info about the school, go to www.schoolofstjude.org