Category Archives: sickle cell centre of excellence

Fundraising Update – $47,000 Raised – Almost There

Donations to the Cycle for Sickle Cell Campaign to raise money for the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania to establish a day treatment centre, have continued to come in over the last couple of weeks since the end of the Tour d’Afrique.

A corporate donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, has just donated $15,000 to the campaign. This brings our total raised to almost $47,000. We don’t have far to go now.

The Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania has now identified a site for the day treatment centre. The money raised to date now makes it possible to begin negotiations. Exciting times.

The Foundation is planning to hold a press conference on World Sickle Cell Day, June 19, to continue to raise awareness. This would be a great day to hit our target.

Thanks  to everyone who has contributed!


To contribute

Click on the Sickle Cell logo under ‘donate here’ – this will take you to paypal

Go into your paypal account

Choose ‘send money’

Enter my email address:

Tick ‘I’m sending money to family or friends’

Click continue

I have updated the ‘Donate Here’ logo to the left to go directly to paypal

5 reasons to ride a bike

I google’d ‘why do we ride bikes’ in a brain dead moment after finishing and sending off a long report. According to David Fiedler there are 5 reasons:

1. For Your Body

There are health benefits for people of all ages

  • increased cardiovascular fitness
  • increased strength
  • increased balance and flexibility
  • increased endurance and stamina
  • increased calories burned

Can’t really argue with that. Although I don’t really think too many car drivers get cyclist’s palsy in their hands (that tingly feeling) or have to slather on chamois cream before a hundred mile ride.

2. For Your State of Mind

It is a proven stress releaser. After a ride you feel relaxed, energized and happier about the world and yourself. And it is fun so it keeps you from taking yourself too seriously.

So no more Prozac for Mr. Fieldler. That’s good. I like that. I’m happy now. No stress.

But is a sixty-year-old man cycling through a sub Saharan desert in canary yellow or bright pink spandex taking himself too seriously or not seriously enough? Your call. Depends on what kind of fun you are having in your canary yellow spandex I guess.

3. For Your Community

It’s good for the people around you – one less car on the road. No noise. You are able to interact with people. It does not harm the environment: no polluting exhaust, no oil or gas consumed, small material inputs.

I like this. Makes me sound virtuous, which of course I am, if a bit dull. Are the material inputs for 8 bikes less than the energy and material inputs to make 1 small car? Possibly.

But not so sure about the people interaction bit. The roads can be mean. Kind of hard to toss off a friendly ‘Hi, how’s your day been?’ when somebody’s just pulled out in front of you and sent your over the bars.

4. For Convenience

There is an undeniable convenience factor: parking spaces are guaranteed, traffic jams are irrelevant.

Absolutely. And so easy to throw into the back of a pickup. Did you get the license plate #?

5. For Your Pocketbook

When you start multiplying cost per mile to operate a car by the distance you ride, you can easily calculate how much money you save by riding a bike.

daily round trip commute = 10 miles.

operating cost of car per mile = 30 pence

Cycle to work 150 days in a year

Savings = 10 * 150 *.3 =  £450

Makes sense?

Cycling shoes =  £120

Cycling shorts * 4 = £240

Cycling jerseys * 4 = £240

Rain jacket = £80

10 inner tubes = £50

2 pairs of cycling gloves = £30

1 new chain = £30

Yes, perfect sense!

Don’t forget to donate to the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania.

ChipIn: Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania



Painless trip to the dentist

I went to the dentist today to have some work done before the tour starts. We have been told by the organisers  in no uncertain terms that we must have a clean bill of dental health before the ride starts. So a couple of moths ago I went to the dentist and had some work done. I thought I was good to go. But, as things happen, a few weeks ago I broke a tooth. So it was back to Bo, my 70 year Swedish Dentist at the Three Crowns Swedish Dental Clinic, to have it put back together. Bo is a big gruff bloke, the kind of dentist who scares kids. He would make a perfect character in a Roald Dahl story. But we get along well in our hermetic world of mutual gruffness. He pushes, drills and pulls. I pretend I don’t feel any pain. Today was the last visit. As I was leaving I invited him to the reception this evening at the Sea Cliff and mentioned that I was cycling from Cairo to Cape Town in support of the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania. Usually when I tell people about the trip I am confronted with a blank stare and a moment of silence.  People need to time to figure out whether I am telling a bald-faced lie, whether I am as mad as a hatter or whether I am doing something they’ve always wanted to do. After his moment of silence Bo asked me how many metres that was. I said about 12,000 kilometres. Twelve million metres he exclaimed. I can’t sponsor you for that much (I had not mentioned sponsorship) and he pulled a hundred dollar bill out of his pocket and gave it to me. He is clearly one of the ones who would like to do it himself. Mad Bo.

Don’t forget to donate to the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania.

ChipIn: Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania


Cycle for Sickle Cell Event October 4

Don’t forget to donate to the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania.

ChipIn: Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania


Fundraising update

A whole team of people has been working very hard in the background to get our sickle cell foundation fundraising campaign off the ground. Anton, Annelie and Derek at DJPA Partnership, a local communications firm; Mejah and his crew at UWABA, a cycling advocacy group here in Tanzania; and Sarah and Julie at the Sickle Cell Foundation. We have two upcoming events: a reception for corporates on October 4th (the Sea Cliff hotel has kindly offered to host); and a ‘Cycle Caravan’ around Dar on October 21st – see the poster (it says Oct 14 by mistake – this will be changed). We are looking forward to both events and hoping to raise lots of dosh for the Sickle Cell Foundation.

Don’t forget to donate to the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania.

ChipIn: Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania

When a man lets things go so far

I was recently reminded of this quote from Flan O’Brien’s The Third Policeman.

“The gross and net result of it is that people who spent most of their natural lives riding iron bicycles over the rocky roadsteads of this parish get their personalities mixed up with the personalities of their bicycle as a result of the interchanging of the atoms of each of them and you would be surprised at the number of people in these parts who are nearly half people and half bicycles…when a man lets things go so far that he is more than half a bicycle, you will not see him so much because he spends a lot of his time leaning with one elbow on walls or standing propped by one foot at kerbstones.”

Duchamp clearly went well beyond half way.

Don’t forget to donate to the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania.

ChipIn: Sickle Cell Foundation of Tanzania