It’s now a little over six months since we finished our epic ride in aid of ShelterBox – having clocked up a final total of 10,775 miles (17,240km) of cycling.
Our trusty tandem is now resting in a storage unit back in Cornwall while Carolyn and I have gone back to teaching English in Portugal.
But the money raised as a direct result of our journey is still having an impact. We estimate we raised just under £50,000 following the talks we gave and other events along the way.
Some of the those who gave to ShelterBox attributed their donations to us – Tandem 10,000 – and I’ve been looking to see where they went.
Boxes funded in full or part with donations we helped inspire include:
- 9 boxes sent to Columbia after huge flooding that devastated the country in December 2010
- 2 boxes sent to Brazil after floods and mudslides in January 2011
- 2 boxes sent to Madagascar following Cyclone Bingiza in February 2011
- 3 boxes sent to Japan after the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011
- 1 box sent to Ethiopia in response to the East African drought in July 2011
- 2 boxes sent to The Phillippines following flooding caused by Tropical Storm Juaning in August 2011
Another 18 ShelterBoxes also funded with the help of donations made in our name are still to be deployed – or more likely they’ve gone to one of many destinations where ShelterBox has been working but the HQ team haven’t managed to update the records yet!
Other boxes will be under the names of those Rotary Clubs, schools, scout groups and individuals who also made donations.
Hopefully, our efforts also managed to spread the word about ShelterBox to many others who hadn’t heard of the charity previously.
For us, the experience is starting to fade a little into memory. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that it was all real. We rode some long miles across some beautiful landscapes. Sometimes the days were tough but it was always worthwhile – partly because we believed in our cause but also because of all the wonderful people we met and who supported us on our way.
A year ago today we were arriving in Wellington, about to start the second half of our journey through New Zealand. The big Christchurch earthquake was still to happen, as was the Japanese tsunami. And we still had a long way to pedal across NZ’s North Island, not to mention Queensland and New South Wales in Australia, and a seven countries in Europe…
The big question now is, can we do it again, please?!