Cycling camaraderie in Israel raises £250,000 for Norwood

21 October 2015

Fifty-six exhausted cyclists headed home happy after completing a gruelling ride from the Negev to Jerusalem today. The five-day trip took them along rocky desert tracks, up into the mountains of the Galilee and off-road in the Jordan Valley, battling temperatures of more than 40 degrees.

Together the team are set to raise more than £250,000 for Norwood’s vital services, supporting vulnerable children and their families, children with special educational needs and adults with learning disabilities.

Among the cyclists were Michael, Julian and Jason – three people with learning disabilities supported by Norwood, riding on tandem bikes. For them, the ride was the culmination of months of training with the Norwood Sports team – which aims to give people with learning disabilities the same opportunities to take part in sports as those without.

First-time Norwood cyclist Robert Rosenberg said: "Being able to spend the week with some of the people Norwood supports was an incredibly humbling and life-changing experience. Jason has autism and is non-verbal, but he smiled throughout and never gave up, even when the inclines were very tough. Michael’s football songs and Julian’s comedy one-liners kept the group’s spirits up."

"Each day was filled with different surprises and highlights but climbing those last three kilometres into Jerusalem on the final day was a tear-jerking moment that our group will never forget."