New charity adventure for EGU's Sharon
Intrepid charity fund-raiser Sharon Heeley is ready to get on her bike again.
Fresh from the success of her adventure on the Cycle China Challenge, the regional golf development officer has set her sights on another marathon test.
Sharon is planning to tackle the Central American Challenge in November next year to again raise money for Women for Women, the charity which funds better health for women and babies.
To complete the 525km route she will have to cross from Panama, through Costa Rica to the finishing line in Nicaragua. The six-day trip will trek along the coast, through steamy rainforests and alongside smoking volcanoes.
Sharon - whose area includes Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Shropshire, Herefordshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire - played her part in helping generate £600,000 from the Cycle China Challenge.
The 450 km route took in the sights of Beijing Province, including the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, Tian'anmen Square and Emperor Qin's Terra-cotta Army.
Sharon, who works for the English Golf Union and the English Women's Golf Association and lives at Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire, was joined on the trip by Emma Lowe, championship manager of the EWGA.
Sharon attended a special reception at The House of Lords, where Professor Robert Winston offered thanks to all the participants and support staff who had taken part in the Cycle China Challenges to date, many of whom promptly signed up for next year's expedition.
Says Sharon: "These events raise funds for ground-breaking medical research. Most of us will know someone who has been affected by a condition that the charity, Women for Women, is striving to support.
"China was an amazing journey and truly rewarding experience, but we couldn't have done it without the support of friends and family.
"The busiest traffic we have ever seen, the largest square in the world, the complete peace and tranquillity of the mountain regions, the happy Chinese people cheering us through the rural villages, the dogs chasing our bikes, the jelly legs, the group signing to get us up those hills, the tears of joy, the hours of laughter, the sheer exhilaration of completing the challenge. We will never forget it!"
Full details on Sharon's Central American Challenge and associated fund-raising can be found at www.justgiving.com/sheeley