On January 16th, I will embark on the Tour d'Afrique--a four month bike race that traverses the African continent from Cairo to Cape Town. I will race a total of 7,500 miles, around 75 miles a day, on paved roads, gravel roads, sand roads and no roads, ending in Cape Town on May 15th. Competing in the Tour d’Afrique is a once in a lifetime opportunity. In addition to challenging myself to finish the race, I am also challenging myself to raise $2 for every mile I ride--a total of $15,000 for the Global Fund for Women.
I have selected the Global Fund for Women because it's an organization that empowers women to create lasting change in their communities. We all know the old saying about teaching a man to fish--the Global Fund works on the same principle by empowering local women's groups to help themselves and their communities. The Global Fund provides grants to grassroots organizations that support women's economic empowerment, improve access to education, work to stem the tide of violence against women, address inadequacies in women's health care and support women's leadership to bring positive change in local and national politics. You can learn more about the Global Fund at their website: www.globalfundforwomen.org. The Global Fund for Women is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and donations are tax deductible.
I will be a guest on the African continent for four months. I spent three months living in Nairobi, Kenya in 2002 and was amazed at the generosity of the Kenyan people. Even those with very little opened their homes and their lives to me. I am still profoundly grateful and I have no doubt I will be greeted with that same hospitality again. Supporting the Global Fund for Women is my way of saying thank you to the communities we will travel through and the people we will meet along the way for sharing their lives and their homes with a bunch of exhausted, spandex-clad foreigners.
You can follow my adventures in Africa on my blog: www.catonabike.wordpress.com. Hopefully when you see, even second hand, the beauty of the African countryside and the generosity and spirit of the African people, it will inspire you, as it inspired me, to make a difference.
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