Sandwell (England), July 12, 2019: Cyclists will use pedal power to ride a distance of 350 miles from Scotland to Birmingham West Midlands to raise funds for Sikh Helpline, a nationwide charity established in Sandwell West Midlands.
The 4-day challenge bike ride from July 25 to 28 starts at 6 am in Edinburgh, travelling through the mountains and steep hills of Newcastle, Leeds and then via Derby to the final destination in West Bromwich, Birmingham.
The Sikh Helpline bike ride event is an opportunity to raise awareness of the valuable services provided and to raise financial support required to fund the Sikh Helpline.
The first annual bike ride began in 2014, covering 14 miles around Birmingham and the Black Country, and then expanded to include Leicester last year.
The Sikh Helpline charity based in Sandwell, offers free and confidential support to anyone in need. Thriving on providing a support platform to help community members without judgement, the Sikh Helpline has been serving the local and national community for over 30 years.
This year Sikh Helpline has the support from MPs, who recognise the work of Sikh Helpline:
Tom Watson MP said: “The Sikh Helpline is a vitally important service used by many people in my area. The bike ride is an ingenious way to raise awareness of their services and to get people active. I hope many people will donate to this fantastic cause and get on their bikes to join in!”
Preet Kaur Gill, MP: “The Sikh Helpline plays an important role in meeting community needs. Their annual bike ride raises funds to support this vital work. I look forward to working with them in my role as chair of APPG British Sikhs.”
Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi, MP: “Sikh Helpline, working with professionals, the police, local organisations and outreach providers, are helping to deal with root issues occurring within the Sikh community. For those affected by alcohol and drug addictions, domestic violence, mental health, bullying and other such sensitive matters, Sikh Helpline ensures that they do not suffer in silence. While supporting them, I give my best wishes and hope that they continue to serve those in need with commitment and determination.”
Suki Lotay, one of Sikh Helpline cyclists, said, “It is vital that young people do not come to see suicide as an escape from their struggles as they seek to address the very real factors which shape their lives. Suicide is preventable, this means just not looking at access to mental health services, but also at how money worries, job insecurity, experiences of loneliness and disconnection can impact young people’s wellbeing.
The Sikh Helpline is a vital service which is and has supported individuals from all backgrounds and races to provide access to professionals and assist venerable people. I support the Sikh Help by raising much needed monies to ensure this vital service continues.”
Andrew Piper from Cannon Hill Cycling Club and one of our cyclists said: “Having been a person in active addiction and now in recovery for 3 years, I am keen to help this cause which helps many people at a time when they are at their most vulnerable. Cycling has been a major part of my recovery in terms of my mental and physical health. To complete the 350-mile ride will be major achievement for me personally and I hope to raise as much money as possible for this admirable cause.”
The Sardar Co, which specialise in turbans and beard care products online, said “We are proud to partner the Sikh Helpline in promoting their services to our community through their annual national bike ride.”
Giani Sukha Singh, CEO of Sikh Helpline who participates every year in the bike ride, said “We need the support of the local communities to help us keep up with the increasing demand of calls. Every call matters and a missed call may be the only attempt someone makes for help. It is crucial that every call is answered. The Sikh Helpline handles hundreds of calls each month on issues ranging from grooming, domestic abuse through to racism and substance addiction. Due to cultural barriers and protection of ‘honour’ within the local community, such victims suffer in silence. With an understanding of these cultural issues and barriers, the Sikh Helpline offers a support network for these victims.”
The Sikh Helpline has also built connections with a number of agencies to ensure callers are signposted to receive the right help.
With a team of volunteers, the charity covers a range of area such as Birmingham, the Black Country, Leicester, London, Ilford, Bradford, Manchester and Leeds.
“We would like to say a BIG THANK YOU! to everyone involved in this event, volunteers, participants and gurdwaras for their support,” said Giani Sukha Singh.
For more information and to make a donation or take part in the bike ride should visit www.sikhhelpline.com