CYCLING from Bulawayo to Harare sounds like an unattainable task and trying to do it in five days of pushing the pedal on the 440 kilometre busy highway makes it appear even harder.
That’s what cyclists who signed up for the inaugural Cycle for a Cause endured when they took to the highway from Bulawayo to Harare to raise awareness on Covid-19 as well as making donations at children’s and elderly people’s homes along the way.
The cycling event is a brainchild of Bulawayo philanthropist and Member of Parliament (Bulawayo South) Raj Modi.
Twelve professional cyclists completed the 440 kilometre route and were joined by dozens of cycling enthusiasts, who determined for themselves the distance to ride, between the towns and cities that link Bulawayo and Harare.
Bulawayo non-governmental organisation Smile for Africa also joined the cycling event as a support partner in making donations along the route.
The elderly and children’s homes in Bulawayo, Gweru, Kwekwe, Kadoma, Chegutu and Harare received donations that included groceries, sanitisers and face masks.
“It was a humbling experience being part of Cycle for a Cause and joining young people from Bulawayo who decided to play their part in spreading awareness on the Covid-19 pandemic as well as donating to the less privileged.
“The unity among everyone who took part in the event from Honourable Modi and his team, cyclists and various partners who supported the cause in one way or another was just tremendous,” said Smile for Africa director Albert Mavunga.
Cyclist Anthony Chifamba said tackling the Bulawayo to Gweru stretch was the longest he had ever done since taking up cycling as a hobby.
“It was the longest distance I have ever cycled but I was encouraged by the other guys to keep pushing and beat my personal target of reaching Gweru. I would do it again next year without hesitation and maybe even cycle all the way to Chegutu,” said Chifamba.
The organisers said they hoped to make Cycle for a Cause an annual event that would tackle awareness on pertinent issues that affect the country at any given time.