BBC Children in Need’s 2012 Rickshaw Challenge finished yesterday evening, the journey completed at BBC Television Centre during a live special on The One Show tonight ahead of the broadcaster’ coverage of the annual charity fundraiser. Since setting out from Llandudno in Wales the previous Friday, the six teenagers providing the pedal power have raised £1,127,317, and there’s still time to donate.
Each of those young people have in some way benefited from charities funded by Children in Need, and the money they have raised will go on to benefit other kids experiencing their own difficulties in life.
Taking it in turns to pedal the heavy rickshaw on it 411-mile journey through Wales and across the Severn Bridge into England, it was 17-year-old Darren who completed the final miles on into White City where the rest of the team were waiting.
Also there were One Show hosts Matt Baker and Alex Jones who had accompanied them on the journey. Baker himself had raised nearly £2 million for the appeal last year when he rode the rickshaw from Edinburgh to London.
A day-by-day diary plus pictures and video can be found on the Children in Need website.
Donations of £5 can still be made by texting ‘TEAM’ to 70705, with texts costing £5 plus one standard rate message, and that £5 going to BBC Children in Need. People making donations must be aged over 16 and have the bill payer's permission.
So far this year’s appeal has managed to raise a record-breaking £27 million and speaking of its success on BBC Breakfast this morning, the appeal’s chair, Stevie Spring, said: “For me, the people who really grasped it were those six young people who took the Rickshaw Challenge for The One Show, which was absolutely phenomenal.
“They raised over a million pounds, they had a great time, they were here at the studio lat night, just over the moon with an experience that will have changed their lives – and I think that was just the heart of Children in Need this year.”
Those six youngsters who completed the Rickshaw Challenge are:
Darren (17) from County Durham. Darren has had glaucoma since he was born and is registered as partially sighted. His mum, dad, brother and sister are all registered blind.
James (18) from Kent. James has been a young carer for his mother, brother and sister since he was very young. When James isn’t at college he runs the household and looks after his family.
Jack (16) from Essex. When Jack was 4 years old he had a kidney transplant. He is very fit now and takes part in lots of sport.
Jamila (18) from London. Growing up, Jamila has seen young people around her turn to crime and gang culture. She chose not to go down this road and now works as a committed volunteer, working to help other young people.
Lauren (18) from Stirling, Scotland. Lauren suffered a brain injury after being knocked down by a car when she was 11. She spent six months in hospital and was left with a broken hip, broken right leg and fractured left arm. She has re-learnt to breathe, walk, talk and eat.
Ciaran (17) from Port Talbot in South Wales. Ciaran was born with cerebral palsy.
BBC Children in Need Rickshaw Challenge 2012 route
Day 1 - Llandudno to Dolgellau - 51.56 miles
Day 2 - Dolgellau to Lampeter - 58.68 miles
Day 3 - Lampeter to Swansea - 53.91 miles
Day 4 - Swansea to Cardiff - 51.59 miles
Day 5 - Cardiff to Bath - 54.76 miles
Day 6 - Bath to Salisbury - 50.81 miles
Day 7 - Salisbury to Reading - 51.55 miles
Day 8 - Reading to White City - 38.43 miles
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.