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My story

I’m taking on the challenge of 70K in May. Why? To help people push back against poverty. Did you know, malnourishment and poverty affect more than 70% of people in Burundi?

Christian Aid are working to empower families in Burundi to build reliable and diverse incomes. Take Aline, for example. She found a lifeline in Christian Aid after she felt the full force of extreme poverty, when an early marriage ended in abuse and violence. We helped her with small business training and she set up as a grocery wholesaler. Today, Aline can afford food, clothes, and essential healthcare for her family.  And she's helping others by chairing a group of 25 families in the Village Savings and Loans Association that she set up.

There’s more people Christian Aid could reach – and that’s why I’m fundraising and taking part in 70K in May.

The money raised can help ensure more people get the skills and knowledge they need to fulfil their hopes and ambitions.  £10 could provide one person with the training that supports their family to set up a small business, such as selling home-grown vegetables.

OR - you could do your own 70k challenge! - click here - 70k in May - Christian Aid Fundraise

Together we can make a lasting difference.  Thank you for your support!

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Christian Aid
1 week 1 day ago
75% of target reached!

Congratulations! This activity has reached 75% of its target!

Christian Aid
1 week 4 days ago
50% of target reached!

Congratulations! This activity has reached 50% of its target!

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
Wednesday St Francis Church Valley park

Visited with granddaughter Jasmine on a tagalong, and fairy lights covering the frame. Had a coffee and a chat, prayed, and Jasmine made a paper mermaid alongside other children.

9.2 miles including doubling back for Jasmine's bag.

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
Tuesday Churches in Southampton

My friend John from the Spanish café had seen the article about my 70k Cycle, and volunteered to join me today. It was great having his company, and his knowledge of the way round Southampton made the journey on the roads much more pleasant than it would have been otherwise.

First to the print shop, Chandlers Ford Precinct. I had prepared a calling card for each church that I call at with a prayer on. Rob copied it for me and gave me them all as a donation!

St Michael and all Angels church, Bassett Avenue. Church closed, so said a prayer and left a calling card.

Highfield Church, Highfield Lane. Presented me with a free coffee! Said a prayer and left a card.

Saint Denys Parish Church, Dundee Road. Popped in, said a prayer and left a card.

Southampton Chinese Christian Church. Appeared closed.

Parish Church of Saint Barnabas

Avenue Saint Andrews URC Church, Southampton. Called in, said a prayer and left a card.

Saint James by the park, Belmore Road.

St James Road Methodist Church. Had a snack at the pleasant Café. Said a prayer and left a card.

Salvation Army church, Victor Street. Closed, said a prayer and left a card.

Limitless mercy Church, Mercy Centre, Shirley. They were just closing but Jonathan met us to pray with us. He is a Doctor who works three days a week so he can work in the church as well. Will invite me to a meeting in January. Exchanged emails.

Shirley Baptist Church Church Street.

Saint Peters Church Lockley Crescent.

Lordshill Church, Lords Hill District Centre.

Saint John the Evangelist Church. Closed, said a prayer and left a card.

All Saints Church North Baddesley. Met the ladies running the library, prayed, and took a photo.

Baddesley Baptist Church, Nutburn Road. Closed so said a prayer and left a card.

St John the Baptist Church, N. Baddesley.  Met the men cutting down a dead tree.

Back home

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
Monday Churches in Wiltshire

Drove to Nomansland with bike

Downton Baptist Church, friendly reception. They said a prayer with me.

Saint Laurence's church, closed, I left a card

Saint Birinius, closed, I left a card

Woodfalls Methodist Church, friendly reception, coffee and cake.

Saint Mary's Church

Saint Andrew's Church, Landford

Church of Saint Margaret of Antioch - where Florence Nightingale was buried.

Nomansland - 26.3 miles

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
BBC Radio Solent interview

Had a good interview with Katie Tyler on BBC Radio Solent on Sunday at 7:35 am.  She's a great interviewer.

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
Sunday to the Cycle Party

Joined the cycle party organised by Stephen Dominy and Pedaltastic.  A happy and friendly event, on amazingly quiet roads round Chandlers Ford - many of them I never knew. Details here: Post event press release.docx - Microsoft Word Online (

Ended with tea and cakes at St Boniface Church and a Christian Aid Week service. 

Brian Ridsdale
1 week 5 days ago
Saturday to Big Brekkie in Methodist Church

Cycled down to Chandlers Ford Methodist Church for their Big Brekkie.  Pleasant reception, thanks!

Brian Ridsdale
3 weeks 1 day ago
Thank you for Donations off-line

Thank you to the people of St Martin's Church who promised more than £160 this morning.

Brian Ridsdale
3 weeks 3 days ago
Churches I'm hoping to visit

I'm now mapping out the churches I'm hoping to visit - trying to be a bit efficient about distances covered!

Christian Aid
1 month 3 weeks ago
First donation received!

Congratulations! This activity has received its first donation!

How your money helps

Poverty pushed Aline to the brink. She was abused, homeless and hungry. But Aline pushed back harder. With Christian Aid funded small business training, she achieved what had seemed impossible, a vital income for her and her children.

Fundraising this Christian Aid Week will ensure more people in Burundi get the skills and knowledge they need to push back against the inhumanity of poverty.

Image credits and information i
Aline Nibogora is pushing back against extreme poverty in Makamba Province, Burundi by raising the living conditions of her community with the support of Christian Aid. Credit: Ndacayisaba Epitace
Aline Nigobora stands in front of her home, She wears a pink top and green skirt and is looking in the camera with a neutral expression