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Updated: Sep 7, 2023

Day 1, written by Wes Badger.

The trip kickstarted with a fantastic morning at Songo primary school in Kayamandi, on the outskirts of Stellenbosch.

There we met Sipho Madolo, who not only runs the school, but through sponsorship and the helping hands of a youth development program became one of South Africa's top multidisciplinary cyclists.

After experiencing the life-changing opportunities cycling provided for him, he decided to dedicate his life to South Africa’s youth.

He now manages - an Educational and Sports programme focused on creating a long-term impact for the children of Kayamandi, Stellenbosch. Founded by Christoph Sauser, are currently teaching 85 children from the ages of 4-6. Great fun was had teaching a group of 13 energetic school kids about the importance of conservation - and, using our new LiC teaching posters which proved to be a success.

Before departing, one of the kids who was playing with what seemed like a small bouncy ball, explained to Emma that it was in fact a rubber bullet from the riot police that had been sent into the area only a week prior to our visit.

Despite the inevitable emotional distress of an incident like this, the young boy turned up to our lesson with an infectious smile on his face and a great enthusiasm for learning.

And what irony; something designed and used for violence in the past was today a source of joy and entertainment for these kids. After a happy goodbye, we set off for Kynsna, taking the scenic route via Cape Agulhas, the Southernmost point of the continent.

As we bumbled along the R44 in the wheels that are going to carry us to from the Cape to Kilimanjaro, the gravity of our journey ahead - with the array of landscapes that we're going to see and the stories we're going to hear - has begun to sink in.

Off to St Francis now to collect our final team member - Ryan - before heading deep into the Transkei. Our day ended with an all-too-true reflection from Dean, "life's not too bad when you're driving through Africa teaching kids."


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