Up for a challenge?

We’re always up for a challenge here at Computer Aid and this year was no different when our supporters headed off to complete the iconic London to Paris cycle ride, take on a 100km course around London over night, survive death valley and take on the streets of India in the name of adventure, fun and of course charity.

Paul got back in the saddle this year and jetted off to India where he completed a 400km cycle challenge across Rajasthan

I left my training rather late, buying a bike just 3 months before I was due to fly and actually starting to use it a mere 7 weeks before. I later regretted this delay as despite being fit and a previous regular cyclist the training was pretty gruelling cycling every day to work and long distances over the weekends. However even by the end of 7 weeks of intense training I was once again loving cycling and excited for the challenge ahead.

The challenge began in Heathrow began with a panic as my luggage was whisked away in a mini bus whilst I made a quick trip to the loos. Fortunately after a quick word to a parking attendant the bus returned and I was whisked away to meet my fellow travellers. A group of around twenty soon-to-be adventurers, including Jeff the doctor, was waiting at Heathrow airport to begin their journey to India.

On arrival I was immediately struck by the cultural and physical differences between the UK and India. The sight of a mother and her three children living under a flyover next to a main road and the chaotic city was both a shocking and enlightening experience. 

The trek

The first day of cycling was also the hottest we were to experience, not helped by a late start which meant cycling through the heat of midday. The first day was definitely the toughest with high temperatures, little wind and several uphill stretches. But after the first day it all got easier and more enjoyable- especially on the second day which included a visit to a Tiger safari where we spotted 3 wild tigers- a spectacular sight and an experience never to be forgotten.

The support crew were fantastic, fixing any punctures and mechanical problems immediately, and there was always a back up vehicle to ride in if the challenge got too tough. Tents were ready for us on arrival each day and the food was tasty- though pretty spicy! 

A life-changing experience

All my experiences, good and bad, made the trek very worthwhile and I met some amazing people along the way- both amongst fellow trekkers and local people. I can only sum up the experience as a‘totally and absolutely amazing and life changing’

And a great help to Computer Aid

Of course not only did the trip make for the adventure (and the challenge!) of a lifetime it also raised a considerable sum for Computer Aid. Paul, like all of our supporters, was given loads of support from Computer Aid and reached his sponsorship target.

The funds which Paul, and many other events participants like him, raised this year have helped us to provide thousands of people with access to ICT and its benefits. It’s because of people like Paul that we can refurbish and ship PCs to projects all over the world and give thousands of people the tools they need to improve their education, health and development prospects. Check out our website for more on the work that we do.

So what’s happening next year?

We’ll once again be tackling the iconic London to Paris cycle challenge, cycling the streets of London from dusk ‘til dawn and taking on a 400km cycle over the Rift Valley in beautiful Kenya. Places are already filling up and next year looks set to be as exciting as this year.

If you’re up for the challenge of a lifetime visit our website for more information on the amazing challenges we get involved in, email me at events@computeraid.org or give me a call on 0208 361 5540 (just ask for Rachel!).

 

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