“It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and can coast down them…. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motorcar only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle”.
These are the beautiful verses of E. Hemingway that inspired the journey I made by cycling from Lazio to Campania last year, and those weee the same verses that led me on my new adventure: “I will ride my bike alone from Puglia to Norway. I will cross six countries with my bicycle: Italy, Austria, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway, breathing deeply of the fresh air and trying to stay more time in contact with nature.”
This experience is so important to us, but sometimes we are so immersed in our daily routine to forget that the beauty of the things lies in the simplest of things. We need to observe new landscapes, we need to travel, we have to watch with curious eyes the beauty of nature, and be surprised to find that a few km away, there are new languages, different dishes, and different cultures. We are so focused on running time and we constantly look at the clock to forget to live in the present.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
Often we are so caught up with ourselves that we forget that there are people who even have no water. On this trip I decided add to the fun by doing something useful for others and then I will collaborate with Amref Health Africa, together with other persons and companies, for a fundraiser. It aims to collect € 185.000 by the end of 2017 to allow to 31.796 people to finally enjoy clean water and food. Sub-Saharan Africa has recorded its third consecutive year of severe drought. At the end of 2016 the rainy season (October-December) brought rainfall levels significantly lower than expected and needed. The drought had a serious impact on access to water resources for domestic use, for crops and livestock. The scarcity of soil water content prevented both sowing and crop, the main source of livelihood of rural communities.
Without water, we cannot cultivate the land and livestock die. Communities, already vulnerable and strongly affected by malnutrition, are experiencing one of the most serious food crises in recent years, whose main victims are women and children under 5 years. Kenya is a country largely arid and semiarid. At the beginning of 2017 and further to the severe drought that hit the country, Kenyan Government has recorded and released an alarming figure: 2.7 million people are acutely malnourished and it is estimated that in June 2017, even cause of the devastating advent of the last rains, people in danger of life will reach 4 million. About 357,285 among children and pregnant women are suffering from severe malnutrition. The rains arrived in late April are unsustainable for the population, because they just devastate the few fields and animals left. Water, flooding in this way, cannot be used by the communities.The water supply of the entire region is almost exclusively dependent on Amref work and a residual Government support. AMREF offers to make available its experience to improve access to water and ensure the proper use of water resources in rural communities, by strengthening the skills for the implementation of community gardens, in order to improve the nutritional status of families. The project in Kitui County involves a total investment of 80,000 euros and will allow 21,796 people and 3,128animals to have access to water and crops, and thereby their health will significantly improve.Amref is working in the Siaya County within the rural communities and local health centres, in order to fight the food crisis in the area, thus reducing the risk of maternal and child mortality and stunting of children, caused by severe malnutrition.Perhaps I can afford to ride a bike or walk, just to enjoy the privileges that nature can offer me but there are those who have to walk just to find water and I cannot stand still facing a similar problem. This project needs many people as possible. If you want to support this initiative with me, you can make a donation by clicking on “Support Amref”.