SOMERSET NEWS: School in a Bag charity salutes round-the-world unicyclist Ed Pratt
UNICYCLIST extraordinaire Ed Pratt – who has currently just set out on the United States leg of his round-the-world unicycle adventure – has hit his £18,000 fundraising target for the School in a Bag initiative.
Ed, of Somerset, had set himself an £18,000 goal for the SIAB charity, based near Yeovil, to represent each of the 18,000 miles on his expedition.
But Ed, who only set out from San Francisco last Saturday (February 3, 2018) on the 4,000-mile journey to New York on the USA stage of the adventure, has sent out a big THANK YOU to all those who have donated.
He has already conquered three continents on his trusty unicycle – Europe, Asia and Australasia – and is now on his way across North America from the west coast at San Francisco to the east coast and New York.
He will then return to Europe and make his way back home to Somerset in England where he will receive a triumphant welcome.
PHOTO - TOP: Ed Pratt (centre) with supporters and fellow unicyclists at the Golden Gate Bridge at San Francisco last Saturday (February 3, 2018).
PHOTO - RIGHT: Amazing unicyclist Ed Pratt who set out in 2015 on his 18,000-mile round-the-world trip.
Ed hopes to be back in England in time for this year’s Home Farm Festival at Chilthorne Domer, near Yeovil, which is planned for June 8-10, 2018, as it is the annual big money-raiser for the School in a Bag charity.
The School in a Bag charity is part of the Piers Simon Appeal which was launched following the death of former Preston School and Yeovil College student Piers in the 2004 Boxing Day Asian Tsunami.
Thousands of schoolbags - packed with everyday school equipment such as pens, pencils and paper - have been distributed to poor, starving and orphaned children around the globe.
It was back in March 2015 that Ed set off on his amazing trip-of-a-lifetime from England on his 36-inch Nimbus Oracle unicycle heading up the north coast of France to the Netherlands, then across Europe and through China before moving down through south-east Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
Ed had originally hoped to raise £7,500 from his travels, but he quickly smashed that through that and has now just topped his £18,000 goal – with still quite a way to go before he can put his feet up. So who knows what the final total might be?
But one thing is for sure – Ed will receive a hero’s welcome when he finally returns to the School in a Bag headquarters.
Luke Simon, chief executive and founder of School in a Bag, said: “He’s only gone and done it! Thanks to the huge generosity of everyone who’s donated so far and everyone who has supported Ed during the round-the-world trip which has nearly reached three years.
“We at School in a Bag have watched Ed’s trip from the moment he left our SIAB HQ in Chilthorne Domer to set off on his incredible journey back in 2015.
“We’ve watched and cheered as he has gone from country to country, continent to continent and during that time, hit his first fundraising target and now he has hit his second one as well.
“The amount of £18,000 is the equivalent to a whopping 900 schoolbags which means 900 children around the world who will be given a lifeline out of hardship and can begin their own journey of discovery through education.
“Ed Pratt – we salute you and thank you for all that you are doing to raise money for our charity and spreading the School in a Bag word around the world.”
And Luke said: “We can’t wait to see you when you return back to where you started!”
Ed was delighted to be joined by fellow unicyclists and supporters as he started the USA leg of the tour by cycling across the iconic Golden Gate Bridge at San Francisco.
“And now for the small challenge of riding the 4,000 miles to New York over the next four months,” he said. “Saying that I’m excited would be an understatement. Let’s do this!”
To make a donation go to Ed’s Virgin Money Giving online page at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=WorldUnicycleTour .