WE MADE IT – BEIRUT & BACK – CHALLENGE FOR ALL!
To mark the 30th anniversary of our co-founder Terry Waite’s release from captivity, Hostage International embarked on its first ever challenge fundraising event in September 2021 to raise much-needed funds for the charity.
More than £10,000 has been raised as more than 130 people reached the collective goal of travelling – albeit virtually and using any human-powered means – the 9,173 kilometres (5,700 miles) all the way to Beirut and back to Terry’s home village in Suffolk.
Talking of his own – and real – experience of his journey back from Beirut 30 years ago, Terry said:
“I remember very well the journey back from Beirut.
“It was a blustery day and there were hundreds of journalists at the airport waiting to hear what I had to say.
“I had made a few notes whilst I was on the plane, and I delivered my remarks extempore, but once I had made them I regarded my mission was over.
“However, it was not long afterwards that our charity was founded, and a new mission was started.”
Terry says that hundreds of returning hostages and their families and friends have been helped over the years, thanks to the efforts of those who so generously support Hostage International, including our team of volunteers.
He added: “It has been very heart-warming to have so many people wishing me well for the 30th anniversary of my release from captivity.
“Thank you all so much for joining with me and our little team to continue the mission to support Hostage international and we hope you have been inspired and will remain committed to our charity.”
The Beirut & Back – Challenge for All was set up not only to raise funds for the organisation, but to encourage people of all ages and abilities around the world to collectively clock up the mileage by running, cycling, walking and swimming – and in the process raise awareness of the work of Hostage International.
Hostage International offers emotional and practical support for people who are experiencing the trauma of a kidnap – either those who have been released from captivity, or those whose loved ones have been kidnapped or are languishing in arbitrary detention.
Trustee and organiser of the event, Mike Millward, said: “We were 136 in number and to have covered this huge distance in just seven days is quite remarkable.
“It is testimony to the way each and every one of our participants embraced this challenge for Hostage International and we can only say thank you.”
The money raised from the Beirut & Back – Challenge for All will go towards the work of Hostage International to support those affected by the terrifying crime of hostage-taking.
Please give what you can to support our work here.
Image: Terry celebrating ©Jenny Coles