Change a Life helps combat crime with their 6th Cycle tour in September 2013

Change a Life tracks ancient Nguni migration routes

Monday, 15 July 2013

We are proud to announce that one of our most valued sponsors, The Change a Life Trust, has mustered together a team of 77 of South Africa’s leading business executives to ride in the sixth Change a Life Cycle Tour organised by Computershare which helps to raise funds to combat crime. These 77 cyclists will be joined by cycling champion Robbie Hunter and extreme sportsman Martin Dreyer as they traverse the ancient Nguni migration paths in September this year.

This year’s five-day 600 km cycle event will track southern Africa’s deep cultural roots, exploring the migration routes of the ancient Nguni people who formed the dominant African cultures of our region. The 2013 cycle tour is expected to raise R3,5 million, bringing to almost R20 million the total amount it has donated to anti-crime and youth development projects in South Africa.

The Change a Life Cycle Tour was established in 2008 in memory of Mike Thomson, a Computershare executive who was murdered at his family home in 2007, and it has developed a track record as one of South Africa’s leading fundraising tours. The Mike Thomson Change a Life Trust supports the management of crime in South Africa and seeks to stop crime where it takes root amongst South Africa’s youth. It funds five highly effective projects that have the common objective of combating crime.

Some of the business leaders who will take part in this year’s event from 7 to 12 September are Nicky Newton-King, CEO of the JSE, Nic Kohler, CEO of Hollard, Alan Hutcheson, CEO of Tracker, Albe Geldenhuys, Chairman of USN, Hoosain Karjieker, CEO of M&G Media Group, Diane Radley, CEO of Old Mutual Investment Group South Africa, Thabo Leeuw, executive director of Thesele Group and David Cleasby, Financial Director of Bidvest.

Funds from the Change a Life Cycle are channelled into five anti-crime initiatives – The DNA Project, which is advancing the use of DNA evidence in bringing criminals to justice; the Martin Dreyer Change a Life Academy, which trains disadvantaged youngsters in rural KwaZulu Natal to become professional athletes; iChoose to Change a Life, which provides leadership training to teenage offenders so they can launch anti-crime projects in their communities; the Change a Life Kushido Karate-Do, which inspires disadvantaged children to become productive members of society through the discipline and power of karate; and Nemato Change a Life which gives disadvantaged youngsters in the townships of Port Alfred the mindset, skills, knowledge and support to become successful in life.

CEO of Computershare and Trustee of the Change a Life Trust with Founder of The DNA Project, Vanessa Lynch

Stan Lorge, CEO of Computershare and Trustee of the Change a Life Trust with Founder of The DNA Project, Vanessa Lynch

Computershare CEO, Stan Lorge says with cycling the fastest growing executive sport in South Africa, there is enormous opportunity to harness the power of cycling for good: “As we set out once again, it is important for us to remember exactly why we do this: to fight crime and provide alternatives and hope through our five projects and their incredibly dedicated and inspiring project owners.”

The Nguni tour will start at the Royal Swazi in the Ezulwini Valley near Mbabane and participants will cycle 220 kms to Mkuzi. From Mkuzi it is 145 kms to Sodwana Bay with a return leg the following day of 185 kms over the Lubombo mountains to Mkuzi. The last day of cycling will see the return of the time trial, which will include a challenging 20 km ride in the Lubombo mountains.

The idea of exploring the Nguni ancestral pastures of Maputaland was a natural choice for the 2013 Change a Life Cycle. This beautiful region of South Africa boasts several pristine game reserves, wetland parks and marine reserves – ideal for cycling and fishing. But it is also one of the least developed and most poverty stricken rural communities in South Africa and Change a Life will involve the local communities in an effort to add value to their lives.

The 2013 Change a Life Cycle has five primary sponsors in Hollard, the JSE Limited, Sun International, UTi and Vodacom. Computershare matches rand for rand all funds raised from cyclist entry fees. For the third consecutive year, 100% of the cyclists’ entry fees and the matched funds will be channelled directly into the recipient projects with all costs of the cycle tour funded by sponsorships.

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