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The One Show’s Rickshaw returns

The One's Show Rickshaw Challenge Return

Team Rickshaw will tackle 470 miles of Britain’s East Coast for BBC Children in Need.

The One Show’s Rickshaw Challenge is back, with a new team of riders and route across Britain’s East Coast revealed on 19th October on the show. Returning for a sixth year, the team will cover a 470-mile journey from the Scottish market town of Jedburgh to central London, all to raise money for BBC Children in Need.

This year the rickshaw will once again be pedalled by six young riders, all of whom have been supported by BBC Children in Need funded projects. The One Show presenter Matt Baker will be on the road cycling alongside the team offering support and advice throughout the journey, whilst Alex Jones will be following every step of the way, cheering on the team, live from studio.

To date the Challenge has raised more than £12million and in keeping with tradition, the young riders will not only test their pedal power, but also their mettle, as they deliver speeches to a live audience explaining their motivations for taking on the challenge this year. The team hopes their efforts will not only help them raise money, but awareness of the real difference being made to disadvantaged children and young people’s lives across the UK thanks to BBC Children in Need.

Setting off on Friday 11th November from Jedburgh in the Scottish Borders, the team will work their way down the East Coast in a bid to cross the finish line in London on Friday 18th November, in time for the BBC Children in Need Appeal Show.

The team taking on this year’s challenge is made up of:

Ebony (18) from Bournemouth. Aged three, Ebony was diagnosed with Ataxia Telangiectasia (A-T), a rare neurological condition that affects her movement and speech, and has left her vulnerable to respiratory infections. The condition is degenerative and there is no cure. Although she doesn’t let A-T get in the way of living life to the fullest, the uncertainty of her future can sometimes leave her feeling isolated.  BBC Children in Need has funded the A-T Society to help change that, giving Ebony and her family the chance to meet others who share their experiences, whilst learning more about the condition.

Andy (18) from Derbyshire. At 13, Andy was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia, an aggressive blood cancer. The sporty teen found himself bedridden, needing blood transfusions, four rounds of chemotherapy and eventually a bone marrow transplant to reduce the chances of the cancer returning.  As a result of the treatments and their side-effects, which included nausea, hair loss and pain, Andy’s confidence and physical strength suffered. He credits The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, which has been supported by BBC Children in Need since 2012, with helping him regain his sense of self.

Phoebe (18) from Derbyshire. In August 2013, Phoebe’s dad died suddenly and unexpectedly. Her family’s life was drastically changed, as they struggled to cope with their loss and adjust to life without dad. Since then, Phoebe and her family have received bereavement support from a BBC Children in Need funded counsellor at Treetops Hospice Trust and are slowly coming to terms with their grief.

Salar (18) from the West Midlands. Salar and his family lived a happy life in Northern Syria. However, when conflict broke out, the family felt forced to flee, leaving their home behind. Since arriving in the UK, Entraide – a project supporting refugees in the West Midlands – has been a lifeline to Salar and his family. With support from BBC Children in Need, the project has helped Salar rebuild his confidence, make new friends and integrate into UK life. He hopes to study medicine and help others in need.

Olivia (17) from Edinburgh. Olivia is profoundly deaf, but she received a cochlear implant at the age of two, and is an active part of both the hearing and deaf communities. Throughout her life, she’s felt that people have either made assumptions about her intelligence because of her deafness, or not recognised that she sometimes has additional needs. Attending BBC Children in Need funded Deaf Action has broadened her horizons and she now enjoys many of the same opportunities as her hearing peers. Today, she helps to mentor deaf youngsters coping with issues of bullying and exclusion.

Ross (18) from Sunderland. Mixed aggressive epilepsy can causes Ross to collapse multiple times a day. As a result, he wears a helmet to protect his head from injury. The condition limits his freedom, as he is under constant supervision, but at Bluewatch Youth Centre Ross can be himself without fear. The group gave him the courage to get out and do the things he loves; that includes cycling, and he can’t wait to show off his skills on this year’s Rickshaw Challenge. When he is cycling, his increased concentration makes it unlikely that he will have a seizure, making it safe for him to ride the rickshaw. Thanks to fundraisers across the UK, BBC Children in Need has been able to support Bluewatch since 2006.

Every year I am inspired by the incredible young people who take on the Rickshaw Challenge, and this year is no different. The six young riders in Team Rickshaw have faced major challenges in their lives already, but thanks to the Charity they have been able to overcome so much; and now they feel ready to give back. We hope that the public will rally behind them to help raise more money for BBC Children in Need. It really does make such a difference.

Matt Baker, The One Show presenter

Alex Jones added: “I am delighted that the Rickshaw Challenge is returning this year. Last year we were amazed by the outpouring of support from people across the UK who gave to the challenge and followed the riders on their extraordinary journey. This year’s team is brilliant, so we’re calling on everyone to show their support once more and push Team Rickshaw to another successful year!”

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