Ready, Set and Go for Bike for Africa as group arrives in Entebbe

FOURTY BRUSSELS AIRLINES STAFF ARRIVE IN UGANDA FOR ‘BIKE FOR AFRICA’ EVENT

(Posted 30th January 2014)

Late yesterday evening did 40 Brussels Airlines staff arrive in Entebbe on their SN flight from Brussels, to start their planned cycling event which will launch on the 31st January from Jinja, East Africa’s adventure capital. The 450 kilometre cycling tour will follow in the footsteps of Sir Henry Morton Stanley, following part of his journey when he explored Uganda, from the Source of the Nile to Murchisons Falls National Park, with lengthy sections off regular tarmac roads.

This Saturday, a group of 13 Belgian CEO’s, including Jacques Borlée, Bernard Marchant (Rossel Group), Christian Van Thillo (De Persgroep), Bob Verbeeck (Golazo), Geert Noels (Econopolis) , Tom van de Cruys (Lampiris) and Hans Bourlon (Studio 100) will join Bernard Gustin, CEO of Brussels Airlines, at Lake Kyoga, where they will bike the rest of the trip together with the Brussels Airlines employees. On the last day of the trip Piet Goddaer (Ozark Henry) will host a concert for the group at the closing event in the Murchison Falls park.

Africa is at the heart of our company, and it is essential that we take our responsibility and give back to the communities we fly to. With our CSR program b.foundation we support not only many NGO’s that are active in Africa in terms of health care – but also our own colleagues who in their free time support local communities in need. Bike For Africa is a way of giving back and at the same time highlighting the unique landscapes of this beautiful continent’, explained Bernard Gustin, CEO of Brussels Airlines in a media release sent out yesterday. He went on to say: ‘As a Belgian company and ambassador of our country, it is also important to give a helping hand to Belgian organizations who commit themselves to assist people in need in our own country. That’s why we’ve chosen United Fund for Belgium (UFB) as a humanitarian partner’.

The biking trip through Uganda is the second edition of Bike for Africa. In November 2011 a first group of Brussels Airlines employees biked 300 km from Kigali, Rwanda to Bujumbura, Burundi. Supported by financial contributions of sponsors, the 40 bikers raised 93.000 EUR for SOS Children’s Villages, with which they were able to perform more than 1.000 medical consultations in Africa.

Bike for Africa is an initiative that we, as Brussels Airlines staff, are extremely proud of. Apart from the charitable efforts, highly appreciated by the local communities and authorities, the first edition was a huge success in many other aspects: It is a great physical challenge, a beautiful trip through the unique African landscape, being welcomed by hundreds of enthusiastic people in the villages we cross and, above all, it is a fantastic team building event’ added Ilse Verhelst, Internal Communications Manager of Brussels Airlines, and organizer of Bike for Africa.

This year Brussels Airlines aims to raise 100.000 EURO. A significant part of the money raised will go to CoRSU, a private hospital which sponsors the rehabilitation and surgery of disabled children in Uganda while the balance will be donated to United Fund for Belgium, a Belgian non-profit organization that helps people in need in Belgium by financing projects of charity associations, mostly focusing on child welfare, reduction of poverty, support to disabled persons and social integration.

Bike for Africa across Uganda, the Pearl of Africa and a very warm welcome to our visitors it is. For more information visit www.bikeforafrica.be

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