mothers2mothers’ (m2m’s) challenge of a lifetime—Cycle2Zero—is back in 2020 for its fourth edition and we are very excited to reveal that it will be held in Uganda!
Every two years, m2m supporters embark on Cycle2Zero—an epic cycling journey through one of the sub-Saharan African countries that we work in. In 2020, participants will pedal for four days through and around Jinja in Eastern Uganda, following trails running along the banks of the famous River Nile and Lake Victoria. Along the way, cyclists will have the unique opportunity to witness m2m’s work first-hand and meet m2m Mentor Mothers—women living with HIV employed by m2m as community health workers who are bringing health and hope to entire families and communities. Through their efforts, participants will be raising much-needed resources and awareness for m2m to support our work towards creating an HIV-free generation. Keen to ride? Click here to find out how!
Revealing the location at an event held at the Airbnb offices, m2m President & CEO Frank Beadle de Palomo said: “Cycle2Zero 2020 will be completely different to any previous edition. Uganda’s unique terrain will challenge participants…but the warmth of Ugandan people and the opportunity to see m2m’s work in action will be sure to keep us all motivated!”
Past editions of Cycle2Zero have taken m2m supporters through Eswatini, Malawi, and most recently, South Africa. Since the first Cycle2Zero in 2014, the teams have cycled thousands of kilometres and next year the aim will be to pedal another 5,000km – reaching the milestone of 20,000km in 2020. With only 10 years to go until the global goal of ending AIDS by 2030, there is still a long way to go and every bit of support will help us get there.
How does Cycle2Zero help these efforts? “It helps raise vital funds, which we use to innovate and expand our footprint. At mothers2mothers we dream the impossible and then make it happen. This is what’s led us to reach over 11M women and children under two since 2001. Being part of this is pretty awesome!”, added Frank.
Reflecting on her own experience, Sal Porter, a Cycle2Zero participant from 2018, shared: “Meeting the Mentor Mothers was incredible – you can’t truly appreciate what they do until you are actually there watching it. They are so dedicated and they love what they do. It really was the most incredible thing I have ever seen.”
m2m launched our services in Uganda in 2010. Our work is presently focused in the East Central region of the country in the districts of Jinja and Iganga. Since 2010, we have tailored our services to match local realities in the region. In 2018, 1.4M people were still living with HIV in Uganda and nearly 60% of those were women.
This is why mothers2mothers is providing age-specific services for all three of our core client groups – women, children, and adolescents – in Uganda. We serve those living with HIV, and those who are HIV-negative but at high risk of infection. As well as working with pregnant women, m2m Mentor Mothers in Uganda identify HIV-positive orphans and vulnerable children and those at risk, supporting them and their caregivers. They also identify children with disabilities, referring them and their families for services, all while educating communities to reduce stigma.
Uganda was also the first m2m country to train Mentor Mothers to promote and foster the economic independence and resilience of themselves and their clients through “Village Savings and Loan Associations” – groups which improve women’s ability to borrow money to finance income-generating activities.
As Nelson Mandela once said, “After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb”. We have come so far in the fight against HIV but we still have a long way to go.
If you are ready to pedal up the next hill with team m2m, email [email protected] to speak to a member of the team or you can download the Cycle2Zero 2020 information pack. Sign up today by filling in a booking form here.
The adventure awaits…