Crawley fundraiser boy completes cycle challenge

A 11-year-old boy who set out to cycle more than 500 miles from Brighton to Scotland has completed his challenge.

Charlie Doherty set off on the three-week journey with his mother to donate a backpack of gifts for a child in Malawi. The pair cycled 30 miles a day.

The backpack was given to Mary's Meals in Glasgow, a charity that provides school food for children in Africa.

Charlie, from Crawley, in West Sussex, has been fundraising for the charity since he was six.

'Amazing generosity'

He said: "Around £2 can feed a child for four months. I wonder what I'm going to be having for dinner, but so many children wonder if they're even going to have dinner.

"When the journey got tough, we knew we just had to press on, as so many children less fortunate than me have it a lot tougher."

His mother, Julie Doherty, 49, said: "We were finding it all quite hard-going, but the amazing generosity and kindness of so many people we met along the way kept us going.

"We even had a meal in Doncaster where the owner had heard about Charlie on the news and wouldn't accept payment for our food - instead, she took a donation box to put in her restaurant.

She estimated the pair had raised £2,000 so far, with more funds to come in.

Mary's Meals will place Charlie's gift in a container with a further 5,000 backpacks ready to be shipped to Malawi, where the charity provides a daily meal to more than 479,000 children.

Charlie has previously asked for donations to be given to the charity instead of receiving birthday presents.

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