In March, Matt and I will be cycling from Sydney to Melbourne over the course of 1-2 weeks to fundraise for Alpha-1 Organisation Australia Inc, who work to promote the prevention and control of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency (A1AD), a widely unknown but common genetic lung and liver disorder, with 1 in 9 Australians having a faulty Alpha-1 gene which puts them and their children at risk. There is now an increased urgency to raise awareness around the condition due to COVID-19.
The trip length will be between 1000 - 1200kms (depending on route) and will take us through 2 Australian states including New South Wales and Victoria, as well as plenty of mental and physical hurdles. We will be carrying all of our supplies on the bikes and will have no support crew. We are both putting in the work to get ourselves cycling fit and will be averaging around 100km + per day throughout the trip, with some days being 120k's +.
We aim to raise $10,000 + and increase public awareness for Alpha-1 Organisation Australia Inc to help them establish a larger footprint in Australia. The charity started up in June 2020 and is the only active Alpha -1 charity in the country. They focus on public awareness raising, health professional education, identifying and supporting those affected and advocating for relevant treatments. There are currently no curative treatments for patients with Alpha-1, but several clinical trials are underway, providing hope to affected individuals and their families. The condition has been exacerbated since COVID-19 because of the impact it has on the lungs and there is now an even more urgent need to generate public awareness. The money raised will support these initiatives and help to increase the profile of Alpha-1 Organisation Australia Inc.
If you would like to read more about the charity, please click here
My dad suffered with the condition throughout his 40's and 50's and I saw first-hand how debilitating it can be. In 2009, he had a double lung transplant, but unfortunately after a long battle in intensive care didn't survive. Since then, I've always wanted to help support other Alpha-1 sufferers and after speaking with Alpha-1 Organisation Australia Inc, decided to commit to the cycle.
We will be leaving on the 13th March and I will be providing daily updates on my Instagram channel - https://www.instagram.com/marklloyd600/
Any spare dollars that you're able to contribute would be greatly appreciated.
Mark and Matt