Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Saddle Up Now To Join Shipping And Transport Charity Ride

Transaid Event Helping Transport Infrastructure in Third World
Shipping News Feature

AFRICA - WORLD WIDE - This November, the great and good of the transport industry will abandon the swish interior of their company cars for a hard saddle and a set of pedals, as they set off to cycle 420 km of Indian Ocean coastline. They will be supporting international development charity Transaid in its sponsored event, Cycle Tanzania, which will raise funds to save and improve lives in Africa and the developing world. Big names in the world of freight movement DHL, Michelin, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) and the Freight Transport Association (FTA) will be hitting the road to help fund a Professional Driver Training project in Tanzania, following the success of the charity’s first project to reduce road deaths in Zambia.

Road deaths are currently the third highest cause of premature death in Africa after HIV Aids and Malaria, a problem Transaid is addressing by raising driver training standards and safety on the roads. Chris Saunders, CEO of Transaid, says he has high hopes of raising even more with November’s expedition than last year’s Cycle Zambia, which generated over £100,000. This new initiative, which runs from November 6th-14th, has attracted teams and individuals from all areas of the transport industry – and more than half of the available places have already been snapped up. Riders will face nine days across the dusty terrain of game and nature reserves under the unforgiving African sun and will not be “any old Sunday afternoon bike ride”, according to Stefanie Machnik, Truck Sales Account Manager, who leads the four strong Michelin team who are already training at UK based events with a view to raising more funds.

“We’ll be passing wild beasts, mountains and waterfalls,” she added, “and seeing it all from our bikes too – not from inside some air-conditioned 4x4. We’ll come back having seen the real Africa – and achieved something good for the world through our efforts.”

Many other registered participants have also started training in preparation for the five days’ solid cycling that will take them on their journey from Dar es Salaam to Morogoro. Participants are asked to pay a registration fee of £299, and make a commitment to raising a minimum sponsorship of £3,000. Registration packs are available to download at http://www.transaid.org/. Alternatively, call 020 7387 8136 to request an information pack, or email april@transaid.org. Transaid will run a sister expedition, Trek Ethiopia, in February 2011. See Transaid’s website for details.

Transaid (patron HRH The Princess Royal) are dedicated to creating transport management systems for the public sector and assisting with the provision of professional driving qualification development and the training of driver trainers. It also assists with teaching preventive vehicle maintenance management and introducing local, low cost transport solutions including its innovative bicycle ambulance.