Travelling by bike in the inner heart of Africa – this is what I do when I am on the road on the so called crossing-borders-expeditions. Exciting adventures!
In 2009, I started – together with my friend Immanuel Schulz – the crossing-borders-expedition I. First, we cycled a couple of weeks across Germany (as a kind of an ‘information-tour’) before we boared a plane to South Africa. From Cape Town we travelled to Namibia, Botswana, Sambia, Malawi, Tansania and Kenia. All of the mentioned countries are beautiful, of course, but one shadow is there, too: many of the people suffer due to the catastrophe of HIV/AIDS. When you travel by bike in those countries, you are not alone overwhelmed by the beauty of nature, but also by you see in the field of this epidemic disease.
The tour took over five months. The total distance: 10,426 kilometres.
We crossed many borders between countries, and we also came to personal limits we had to overcome. It was hard to travel sometimes: some nights it was extremely cold, but often, at daytimes, it was extremely hot, too. We had to cycle through areas, where you think that the horizon never ends, and from time to time the area we came through was very mountainous. It was hard, but surely not as hard as the daily situation of all those people in Africa who are infected or affected by AIDS.
Me – as the organiser of the crossing-borders-expeditions – I have two aims: first, I want to raise the attention to those who suffer a lot because of AIDS, mainly the countless orphans who have lost their parents and all relatives because of AIDS. Secondly, I want to raise funds for an orphanage in Kenya, which I have helped to be built: the “Malaika-Children’s Home.
The crossing-borders-expedition I has helped the aid-project a lot: many people I met on the ‘pre-tour’ through Germany became donors, the tour received lots of media attention and now – having visited a lot of German schools – we can call many of them ‘Malaika-partner-schools’. Fortunately, the number of orphans in the Malaika-Home could be doubled! And last but not least: we even managed to raise enough funds to buy an own small piece of land. Small houses for the kids could be built within the last year – which means: luckily, the times of paying rent from donations is over now!
But this is not the end of the crossing-borders-expeditions. I want that even more needy children without any perspective in life can be taken out of the dirty streets – the Malaika-Home should be a new home for some of them. Therefore money is needed. That’s why I organise the crossing-borders-expedition II. In 2013, I will cycle with my friends Jurgen Walti (Germany) and Toto Chipeta (Sambia) through the following countries, which are also affected by AIDS: South Africa, Lesotho, Swasiland, Mosambic, Malawi, Tansania, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya. An ‘information-pre-tour’ through Germany will be done before – even longer than in 2009!
I would be happy, if this tour will be supported by lots of people again!
Thanks a lot, asante sana,