They may not be serious cyclists, but Newcastle’s Karen Farrell and Forster’s Amy Heague are intent on riding nearly 500 kilometres across one of the world’s poorest countries to raise awareness for a significant cause.
Ms Farrell and Ms Heague are among 21 women who will cycle across Cambodia in October this year to help draw attention to human trafficking in a country considered the sex trade capital of the world.
The two-week trip, labelled Cycle 4 Cambodia, consists of a nine-day ride from Siem Reap in the north to Kep in the south.
The women, from the Hunter, Central Coast, mid-north coast, Tamworth and Sydney, will then spend four days in Phnom Penh volunteering and visiting organisations who assist people affected by or at risk of human trafficking.
Ms Heague said she had organised the fund-raiser with friend Kerrie Moran after a visit to several slums and brothels in Cambodia in 2006.
“I’ve been to Cambodia before and I’m very passionate about what’s happening over there in terms of human trafficking, especially children into the sex trade,” she said.
“We were thinking of a fund-raiser and sort of threw around the idea of riding bikes around the country.
“Neither of us are sporting and neither of us have really ridden bikes before, so it’s a bit out of our comfort zone.
Ms Farrell said the group wanted to raise funds and bring attention to the issue in the hope of eventual change.
All of the riders are self-funded, and donations can be made atwww.cycle4cambodia.com.