Super Elred We are always going on about how lucky we are to have the family around us that we do, and that without them, FTH:K would never have been able to reach the heights it has. Well, once more we are singing this tune. Why? Because one of our most awesome Family Members is cycling 2000kms in August/September – and he’s doing it to raise money for us! You want to sponsor him…you know you do…

Elred is a Cape-Town based IT consultant with 23 year’s experience with Pick n Pay, who now runs his own company: Elred Lawrence Business Solutions. He is also one of our favourite FTH:K stories. One of his colleagues, Colin Scholtz, interviewed Tanya on what was then FreshFM – Pick n Pay’s radio station – two years ago. As a result, we invited Colin to the opening night of Pictures of You at the Baxter but at the last moment, something came up and he was unable to attend. He offered the tickets to Elred who came, watched and was instantly hooked! He says the piece was so different to anything he had ever seen that he immediately joined the FTH:K Family and has been an ardent supporter of the company ever since.

Ok. But the cycling stuff?

Well, Elred completed his first Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour in 1992, and has since finished a further fourteen. The idea of cycling a long-distance route came to him in 2002 when he was planning his next holiday and an article about the El Camino de Santiago in Spain caught his eye. At first he thought he might walk it but was worried that it would take longer than the time he had to spare – until he read the final line of the article which said that the tour could also be completed by bike. He had cycled this famous Pilgrim Trail (about 1000kms) in 2002 and enjoyed the journey so much he was inspired to start planning for the next one. Ta-dah!

Enter FTH:K.

At our most recent AGM, we took on the issue of the recession and the challenging arts environment that currently exists in South Africa. We called on our supporters to help us find new and interesting ways of bringing in resources to make sure we can carry on doing the work you love. After the AGM, Elred approached us with the idea of using an upcoming cycle to raise money for the Company, and we loved the idea, not only because of the fundraising potential, but also because it was a great example of how we like to put the fun in fundraising. Especially because we don’t have to do the cycling! The long and the short of it is that on 24 August 2012, Elred will leave for England, to embark on the 2000km Via Francigena, an ancient pilgrim trail that was regularly walked over a thousand years ago by clerics and church officials going from Canterbury Cathedral to the Vatican in Rome to visit the Pope. It has been officially resurrected today by the various Governments whose territory it crosses and designated as a European Cultural Route by the Council of Europe. And with every kilometre he cycles, you guys can sponsor not only his pilgrimage, but also South Africa’s favourite visual theatre company!

The Route

ViaFrancigenaThe Via Francigena is not a single road but rather comprises of several possible routes that changed over the centuries as trade and pilgrimage developed and waned. Depending on the time of year, political situation, and relative popularity of the shrines of the saints along the route, travellers may have used any of three or four crossings of the Alps and the Apennines. Unlike Roman roads, the Via Francigena didn’t connect cities but relied more on abbeys.

How to support us

Either you can make a direct deposit into our account, donate through our paygate, or email us with your pledge and we will calculate your donation once he has finished the journey! How easy is that?! He will be recording his travels through his blog, including linking his Garmin tracking system and heart-rate monitor to the site, so you can get a real-time breakdown of his journey and adventures.

So what’s not to like about this?? Support a brave cyclist on a pilgrimage towards great things and at the same time, support a theatre company on a similar mission.

When we talk about turning small money into big change, we mean it!

  1. […] is. The newest change that we have taken on is in how we raise our money. You already know about Elred’s Epic Journey, but we have recently added a new tool to the FTH:K box of tricks: […]

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