Bournemouth vicar completes indoor cycling challenge for Christian Aid Week
A Bournemouth Vicar and his two sons have cycled for 12 hours non-stop without leaving their home to raise money for Christian Aid Week.
Reverend Michael Smith, a keen cyclist, raises money every year for Christian Aid by taking part in Big Bike to Brekkie, a sponsored cycle to Winchester Cathedral with others from across the Diocese. This year the coronavirus restrictions have prevented them from cycling to Winchester, and so the vicar and his sons Alexander (20) and Matthew (18) decided to do the cycle in their garden on an exercise bike instead.
Christian Aid’s annual fundraising week unites 50,000 volunteers and 12,000 churches to fundraise to help some of the world’s poorest and most marginalised communities. But this year, the organisation has been challenged to raise money in new ways, as physical fundraisers including house-to-house collections, Big Brekkie events and sponsored sporting events have had to be cancelled.
Reverend Michael Smith, Vicar in the Parish of Winton, Moordown & Charminster said:
“I've supported Big Bike to Brekkie since it first started, as it was a great way to get involved in an amazing charity and have a ride down to Winchester for breakfast. This year, however, with Coronavirus and in the depths of lockdown, we had to be a bit more imaginative. So, Alexander, Matthew and I set ourselves the challenge of cycling for 12 hours, from 8am to 8pm during Christian Aid week.
“During this period of lockdown, there have been lots of acts of kindness and love throughout the country and world, and we wanted to play our part as keen cyclists. At this time we need think imaginatively to support the wonderful work Christian Aid does to fight hardship and strive for a world where everyone can live a full life, free from poverty.”
Rev Michael’s cycle ride is just one example of the many ways members of the parish have imaginatively got involved with Christian Aid Week despite the lockdown. The parish also organised a virtual cake sale, where people could buy cakes which will be baked and delivered once lockdown is over. While the coordinator of the parish's walking group is doing a sponsored walk.
Donations to Christian Aid can be made through Michael, Alexander and Matthew’s JustGiving page at: https://www.justgiving.com/team/smithsinnit