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Maya to make 700 charity ride to granny's!

By Alan Beresford

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THERE is nothing unusual in youngsters jumping on their bike and riding over to see their granny – however, for one Findochty girl, that trip is going to involve a 700-mile pedal traversing three countries.

Maya MacDonald gets in some training before her marathon bike ride to her her grandmother. Picture: Pete Macdonald
Maya MacDonald gets in some training before her marathon bike ride to her her grandmother. Picture: Pete Macdonald

Maya Muhle-MacDonald (11), along with mum Ulrike, is set to begin her epic journey on June 25 during which she hopes to raise cash for the charity Mary’s Meals.

Her dad, Pete MacDonald, explained: “It’s an amazing journey Maya and Ulrike are about to undertake.

“They’ll travel down to Newcastle take the night ferry to Amsterdam, then following various cycle paths, head towards Berlin and then south towards Dresden, where her Omi (grandmother) lives in a town (Pirna) .

“The journey on the bikes will take at least three weeks to arrive in Dresden, but they are following designated cycle paths and stopping off at camp sites along the way through Holland and into Germany.

“Both Maya and her mother are keen cyclists, Maya going to school each day on her bike.”

The youngster’s concern for others, plus inspiration from her school, will mean meals for hungry kids thanks to her support for Mary’s Meals.

“The idea to have a road trip came about from caring about the environment as each year they normally fly to Germany. but this will be a fantastic way of seeingboth countries from the kerb,” Mr MacDonald continued.

“Whilst at school Maya ,who attends Findochty Primary School was shown a video of the work of a charity called Mary’s Meals. Watching the video and being inspired to help them she has decided to raise funds for the mercy organisation. At the time of writing she has now well over £200.

“All we are asking is for people to have a look at the Mary’s Meals website. Scroll down to the fundraising section and look for Cycle trip click on it and here you will find information and all the latest news and progress. With less than two weeks to go, both bikes are on the road doing at times 50km.

“Already Maya has cycled from Findochty to Hopeman and back, Hopeman to Forres and Aberlour to Findochty, along with her usual routes in our area.”

Maya’s charity bike ride with a difference was praised by Findochty Primary head teacher Dawn Thomson.

“We are very proud of Maya and the caring and responsible attitude she has,” she said.

“Maya is always thinking of how she can make things better in the world around her and loves to find interesting and inspiring ways to get her messages across. Everyone at Findochty Primary School wishes Maya the best of luck in her mammoth undertaking – we know she can and will do it. Go Maya go!”

Mary’s Meals core aim is that every child has at least one proper meal a day in a place of education. By attracting youngsters into school and persuading them to stay in the classroom and learn, it is hoped that they will use their education to try and haul themselves, their families and their communities out of poverty.

The charity operates in a total of 18 countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and the Caribbean.

For more information on the work of Mary’s Meals, have a look at their website at www.marysmeals.org.uk

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