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Matthew is welcomed home after four-year long worldwide cycle ride for SOS Children

Matthew on his travels
Matthew on his travels

Matthew Blake, 25, from Chacombe in Oxfordshire has just returned from an epic four-year cycle ride around the world. Covering a distance of over 45,000 miles, Matthew has travelled through 61 countries whilst raising valuable funds to support our new SOS Children’s Village currently being built in Chipata in Zambia.

Cycling regularly whilst completing his degree at Kingston upon Thames, and learning about others who had cycled around the world, after graduating Matthew decided to take on a cycling challenge of his own. He says that he had “the desire to challenge myself, to take on something I didn’t know I could do, to see the world from a different point of view and to live a life less ordinary.” Matthew worked for a year in order to save up enough money to leave his home in April 2008 and set off on his 48-month journey.

Starting from his home in Oxfordshire, Matthew travelled through Europe, Asia to Japan, the Americas via Alaska and onto Africa. He camped when possible but also relied on the kindness of strangers to offer a shower and a bed. He cycled approximately 100km every day (around 5-6 hours of cycling), although this was dependent on the terrain.

Through sponsorship and giving talks to schools along his route, Matt’s trip has already raised over an amazing £11,000 for our work in Chipata in Zambia. We are currently building a new Children’s Village in this deprived area, where one in six of all children are orphans. The new Village, due to open later this year, will have 13 family homes, where groups of orphaned and abandoned children will be cared for by specially trained ‘SOS mothers’ until they reach independence.

Whilst on his travels, Matthew visited the site on which the Children’s Village is being built, and hopes to raise a final total of £15,000. Although his travels are now over, Matthew is continuing to raise awareness and funds for SOS Children by talking about his experiences.

You can read more about Matthew’s journey and sponsor him by visiting www.worldwidebikeride.com

Find out more about how you can Be part of Chipata.