Michael Whitfield

In 2019 I have a double challenge on behalf of the Atlas Foundation: getting high enough (not like that) to see Everest from a trekkers hut at dawn in the Himalayas, and sitting on a wafer thin saddle for 80 tortuous miles as part of the Atlas peloton in the tour of Cambridge  - very much bringing up the rear!

I feel privileged enough to have seen the work that Atlas does first hand, helping some of the world’s poorest kids, grow and thrive through the power of rugby. On a recent visit to Botswana and Zimbabwe, I visited two Atlas projects. I witnessed the joy of kids playing in a minis tag competition, as well as the club we helped set up two years ago, that now has 60 kids training on a Saturday morning. But to be honest, I expected that.

What I didn’t expect was the fact that the food we provide at these sessions was the kids only decent meal each week, and the sanitary towels we gave the girls now allows them to go to school and rugby five days a month more during their periods,  when previously they were confined to their homes.

I will never forget the tears of joy they shed, whooping with happiness, as Jason handed over the boxes of towels to them.

That is the essence of rugby, that is the power of Atlas, and that is why I am driven to do the crazy stuff I do.

My Atlas challenges started 2016 climbing the highest peak in North Africa, and then I moved onto the Arctic Circle, walking up extinct volcanoes and scaling ice walls in 2017. In 2018, it was a 500 mile trek across Africa, followed by a very slow and hard 100 mile bike ride!

I raised £10,000 for the 2016, 2017 and 2018 challenges, and I'm aiming of course to repeat this for the 2019 challenges. Whilst I am going great guns already, I really want to smash it this time and, with your help, I most certainly will.

I have had a huge amount of support already, and you can see this on my past fundraising page here: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/michaelwhitfield1

To those of you who have already supported me, I salute you, for those yet to do so…don’t worry, you have plenty of time!

Thank You!

Michael/Rhino x

Michael Whitfield