Archives For 2013 Cycle

Check out our first newsletter of 2014!


This issues includes:

– A video from Steve Sosebee, the President and CEO of the PCRF

– A word from Tamara Ben Halim, Cycling4Gaza’s co-founder

– A story from Rami Zughayer, our first Palestinian cyclist from the West Bank, about the Germany cycle

– Updates on the REACH Gaza project from Zara Hannoun, lead organiser for Cycling4Gaza

Dear friends,

Happy new year. I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know where Cycling4Gaza is at during this exciting time, what we have achieved in the past year, and where we are headed in 2014.In 2013, Cycling4Gaza:

  • Identified a pioneering Gaza healthcare project run by the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund (PCRF) and built a meaningful partnership with the PCRF
  • Raised over $215,000 for the PCRF’s REACH Gaza project
  • Organised and successfully completed its fifth cycling challenge through Germany with 39 people taking part, expanding its total number of people recruited and mobilised through cycling to 119
  • Reached thousands of people around the world through media coverage in various publications such as MBCThis Week in PalestineBarakabits, and Dubai Eye

Our  400km challenge from Hamburg to Berlin in September 2013 culminated at the gates to the Berlin Wall, with smiling faces and aching muscles. You can read more about the challenge from one of our cyclists, Rami Zughayar (scroll down).The openness of Berlin, a city with a complex history, the lack of walls, barriers, obstacles, served as a bittersweet reminder of what can be achieved, and of what yet needs to be achieved in Palestine, where a graffiti-covered wall painfully similar to that of the former wall that stood in the heart of Berlin, still stands today.A couple of the cyclists this year asked me “why Cycling4Gaza? Why not Cycling4Palestine?” Why Cycling4Gaza? Because, as far as we can see, Gaza needs it the most. Palestinians who live in the Gaza Strip have been made increasingly isolated from the world, and indeed from the rest of Palestine, so that families are constantly torn apart, and the Palestinian community has become entirely fragmented, with no sense of a whole.  And while the tide slowly turns and the international community begins to come round to the struggle of the Palestinians, while we are starting to hear the other side of the story that was neglected for so long, the story of Gaza remains left behind. The faces of Palestinians in Gaza, of human beings, are rarely ever seen, their voices rarely heard. So this is why we are cycling for Gaza. It is our job to build on Cycling4Gaza as a space that brings this story to life, that gives a different face to the misunderstood place that is the Gaza Strip. It is our job to continue doing something positive in Gaza’s name, to continue working on education and healthcare, to continue cycling and supporting Gaza’s most vulnerable and marginalised, to continue giving people all over the world an opportunity to be involved and make a positive contribution.Over the next couple of years we hope that our work will expand to include creating stronger ties with the Palestinian community in Gaza, directly involving them in our efforts and trying to find ways for more Palestinians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to cycle with us. It will expand to include outreach work that informs and educates people on the situation of the siege on Gaza, and it will continue to support sustainable social projects in the region through the mobilisation of volunteers and cyclists around the world.We are a small team of volunteers with big hopes. Alone we cannot achieve our ambitious goals. Your support has taken us this far, and we hope it will take us further and help to kickstart a promising 2014. Right now, through a few simple clicks, you can help us to expand our reach and grow our efforts:1. You can forward this newsletter on to ten friends who know nothing about Cycling4Gaza, better yet who know nothing about Gaza.

Encourage them to:
– Sign up to our mailing list (website)
– Join our Facebook page
– Follow us on Twitter

(And make sure you do the same!)

2. You can share our latest press release with your media contacts. The more we can talk publicly about Gaza the more people will hear us and the closer we are to our goal of informing and educating as many people as we can about the situation in the Gaza Strip.

Finally, if you would still like to donate, you can do so here:

I hope you enjoy the rest of this newsletter. I would like to thank you all once more for your incredible support, the cyclists for their superhuman efforts and achievements, the PCRF for their invaluable work in the Gaza Strip and Palestine at large and for the partnership they have fostered with us, our corporate sponsors for their generous support, and finally the Cycling4Gaza 2013 committee who worked tirelessly to make this another successful year. They are: Zara Hannoun, Mohammed Tahboub, Tala Fahoum, Natasha Hannoun and Tabrez Ahmad.

Stay tuned for updates as we get the ball rolling in 2014!

Warmest regards,


We would like to thank ICON, a young energetic consulting company, for supporting a project which will alleviate the suffering of thousands of children in Gaza. ICON’s Silver sponsorship of the 2013 Cycling Challenge will be used for the REACH Gaza project in partnership with the PCRF; providing children in Gaza with the required medical aid they require.

ICON logo

A brief note on ICON and its Founder:

ICON is a management consulting firm and a leading advisor on business performance and strategy. Identifying potential and helping our clients deliver high performance is ICON’s specialty.  ICON is no ordinary Management Consultancy. Our team is made up of business leaders, experts, and top-tier practitioners who have personally designed and implemented, tried and tested the solutions we offer.

The comprehensive services of ICON are designed to ‘jump start’ businesses and corporations into delivering high performance.  From Consulting, to Training, to Coaching, each service line builds our clients’ capabilities and increases their bench strength and competitive edge.

ICON’s profound understanding of industry, business and professional needs is built on a foundation of 250 years combined experience in our different fields of practice. Strong roots in the Gulf and wider Middle East – allied to a global ‘think tank’ of industry expertise – puts the best regional and international brains at our client’s disposal.

Principle and founder of ICON, Salma Sakhnini graduated with an MBA from Yale University and holds the Master License for 360 Solutions for the GCC and is a Certified Executive Coach. In addition to ICON, Salma also founded and managed an industrial manufacturing business. She previously held a number of senior leadership positions including, working as Vice President with Citibank and as Chief Operating Officer with Rasmala Investments.

Salma is renowned for being the ‘Strategist for Success’ and is an active member of the community.  She consults for the public sector in the Gulf Region – actively working with and coaching reform and strategy teams – and has lectured at the American University of Dubai. She is a speaker at various regional and international conferences and held executive workshops on numerous topics including Leadership, Delivering Performance, Quality, and Six Sigma.  She has served as a “Judge” on the Dubai Quality Award and is a member of several Advisory Boards in the region.

C4G day 2 – Wismar to Muritz, 135km

tamara —  September 21, 2013

Day 2 done! We’re now resting in Muritz after a very long day of rain and pedalling 135km. Thank you to everyone for your fantastic messages of support. Keep them coming! Keep sharing our news and spreading the word in your networks. We have raised over $160,000 (£100,000) so far for the PCRF and working hard to hit our target of $230,000. Still taking donations here:

Tomorrow we will cycle a final 100km to reach Berlin. Until then, enjoy the photos!

Morning aches and pains, getting ready to get back on the bike..

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photo (28)

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Awareness-raising flyers we are handing out along the way for any curious Germans..

c4g germany flyer 3

And they’re off!

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Happy faces in the rain..

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C4G 2013 takes off from Hamburg

tamara —  September 19, 2013

45 of us are on our bikes from Hamburg to Berlin in support of the PCRF. 74 km covered so far. Rain and sun and cloud and blue sky all rolled into one. Now leaving Lubeck and heading towards Wismar where we will spend the night.

direction stop

c4g2013  c4g2013_tam q

group start

Keep following our progress here and on Facebook and Twitter. And help us spread the word in your social media channels!

2013 Newsletter

Zara Hannoun —  June 20, 2013

Hey Everyone!

Check out our 2013 Newsletter

You can sign up for our 2013 cycling challenge by downloading the registration pack found as a PDF link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Get Moving!

Cycling for a Future

Cycling for a Future

Registration is finally open for the 2013 cycling challenge. To confirm your place on this exciting journey please fill out the following form and send it back to us, along with the deposit, before the 30th of June:

Germany 2013 Registration Pack


A word from Cycling4Gaza co-founder, Tamara Ben-Halim

Arrival into Istanbul

Dear friends,

This time four years ago, a group of friends in London were frantically recruiting cyclists, organising fundraising events, training on their bikes, and embarking on guerrilla poster-hanging operations around the city. Our mission was to promote an international cycle in support of emergency healthcare work in the Gaza Strip following the 2008-2009 military offensive.  Within weeks, our modest effort had evolved into a 27-strong team of people from all over the world coming together in support of Gaza’s population. Over 3 days in July 2009, we cycled 320km from London to Paris and collectively raised over £90,000 for MAP UK ’s healthcare projects in the region.

Continue Reading…

PCRF’s message

Zara Hannoun —  June 16, 2013


PCRF’s founder Steve Sosebee talks about the REACH project

We are honored to partner with Cycling4Gaza and the many dedicated volunteers from all over the world who support their great deeds. This partnership will enable us to focus on addressing the terrible human crisis facing children in the besieged Gaza Strip.  Our goal in the REACH (Reaching Every Affected Child in Gaza) project is to identify every sick and injured child in Gaza in need of specialized medical care, and to provide them with the surgery that they need but cannot get within the exhausted local healthcare system.

The PCRF was created as a nonprofit, nonpolitical medical relief organization during the first Intifada, by concerned people who were seeking ways to contribute positively to the humanitarian needs of children under Israeli military occupation. Over the past twenty-two years, we have sent over 1,000 children from Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Iraq for free surgery in North and South America, Europe, Asia and other parts of the Middle East.  We have treated over 10,000 children through direct surgery by hundreds of visiting teams from all over the world.The PCRF has field staff and offices throughout the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and Lebanon to ensure that we are able to identify and support the care of children in need.

Continue Reading…

Impact Over 4 Years

Zara Hannoun —  June 16, 2013

MAP photo 2  Sara_Atfaluna

Since 2009, Cycling4Gaza has positively impacted the lives of 5,000 children and 3,000 family members and individuals in the community through projects working in maternal and children’s health, mental and physical disability, psychological care and children’s education.

In 2009, we supported three emergency medical relief projects with MAP UK in response to the 2008-2009 military offensive on Gaza:

•The Emergency Maternal and New-born Healthcare project ensured the safety of mothers and babies through creating an integrated emergency procedure and building the capacity and skills of the staff.

•The Specialist Burns Care training project trained staff to respond to emergency cases and upgraded the ground facilities for the project to function more effectively.

•The Train the Trainers in Primary Care project provided members of the community with skills and knowledge that allowed them to act as effective first responders to give critical first aid intervention within the golden hour of patient injury.

Continue Reading…

The 2013 Cycle Challange

Zara Hannoun —  June 10, 2013

The time is finally upon us, the 2013 cycle challenge is officially underway in GERMANY.

The 3 day journey will take us from Hamburg to Berlin through beautiful places including Wismar and Muritz. The cycle will commence on the 18th of September and end on the 21st in Berlin; covering an impressive 360 km (a challenge worth undertaking)!

To sign up please fill in the registration pack which will be released shortly. In the meantime please feel free to email us or post on our Facebook page if you have any questions.

Check out what you’ll be cycling through if you sign up:


The 2013 Cycle Challenge will be supporting the REACH Gaza (Reaching Every Affected Child in Gaza) project launched by the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund.The project will identify children in Gaza in need of medical care, whilst creating a centralised database, and provide the children with the treatment required.