4 grandfathers pedal through Calgary during fundraising ride across Canada for wells in Africa
A bike ride of 10,000 kilometres, scheduled to last 65 days to raise funds for 65 water wells in Africa, rolled through Calgary Thursday.
Estimates are that 785 million people on this planet do not currently have access to clean water and, on average, a person dies every 90 seconds from a preventable water-related disease.
"We are grandfathers," said cyclist Mike Woodard, "It would break our hearts to have to watch one of them die. We just thought, lets make a difference in the lives of people in villages in Africa."
The ride — which is carving a path across Canada from the Arctic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean — has encountered numerous challenges to this point, but the motivation is strong to keep the team rolling on.
"Like today, when you’re riding through the rain, you think this is hard," Woodard told CTV News. "This is hard, but it would be a lot harder to watch your children die if they didn’t have clean water."
The group says a donation of $8.50 can help provide clean water for a person for a lifetime. Each well that is drilled services about 1,000 people and it costs about $8,500 to drill a well.
Donations are being accepted at Cycling 4 Water. The website also offers updates on the group's progress.
The team of cyclists are raising funds in partnership with the Global Aid Network (GAiN).