EMERGENCY medical response charity CRITICAL is encouraging adventure seekers to take on a unique challenge in a bid to advance care among Irish communities.
The charity has teamed up with Elite Events Management to run a series of Bike and Hike challenges in picturesque locations along the Wild Atlantic Way.
Events will be held in Donegal, Mayo and Kerry between May and September and will include a climb of Errigal, Carrauntoohil and Croagh Patrick.
CRITICAL provides pre-hospital emergency care to critically ill and injured patients in their local communities through its network of volunteer emergency medical responders.
The charity has volunteer critical care doctors in Mayo, Donegal and Dublin and will soon have teams in Meath, Kildare, Wicklow and Waterford.
The volunteers are tasked by the National Ambulance Service to serious incidents and their rapid response vehicles are kitted out with specialist medical equipment which allows them to perform complex and often life saving medical procedures at the scene.
CRITICAL’S Chief Executive Micheál Sheridan said, “We believe that everyone should have access to rapid emergency medical care regardless of where they live in Ireland.
“We want to bring critical and advanced levels of care to more rural and urban communities. Our volunteer critical care doctors and experienced medics live in these communities and fundraisers like this help us to provide them with the lifesaving equipment they need to treat seriously ill and injured people at the scene, essentially bringing the emergency department to them. This challenge will put your physical abilities to the test, but more importantly, it will allow you to give back to the community in a meaningful way by potentially saving a life. We hope that companies will take on the challenge and encourage their team members to take part.”
There is no registration fee, instead participants are asked to raise a minimum of €500 to support CRITICAL.
They will be provided with a fundraising pack, a training plan and guidance to help with the physical and fundraising aspects of the event.
Each event will be fully supported with bike mechanics, mountain safety and medical assistance throughout.
The first Bike and Hike will take place in Co Mayo on Saturday May 13 starting and finishing at Westport Harbour.
The 50km event includes a seven kilometre climb to the summit of Croagh Patrick, taking in the breathtaking views of Clew Bay.
The second event takes place on Saturday June 3 in Co Kerry, starting and finishing at Killarney Brewery.
It includes a 12km climb of Ireland’s highest mountain Carrauntoohil and a 66km cycle taking in Lough Acoose and Lough Caragh before returning to Killarney.
The final Bike and Hike will go ahead on Saturday September 23 in Donegal, starting from Gortahork.
Participants will climb Errigal, Donegal’s highest mountain and will cover 68km before returning to Gortahork.
Launching the Bike and Hikes were Mayo Ladies Football Captain Kathryn Sullivan and Dr Lisa Cunningham, Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Mayo University Hospital and CRITICAL board member.
Kathryn Sullivan will be taking on the challenge and said, “I’m excited to sign up for Bike and Hike and I’m encouraging everyone who would like to take on something new to join me on the day. It is a brilliant way to get fit, all people need is a moderate level of fitness and they will be provided with guidance and support on training throughout too. More importantly, you will be raising funds for a vital charity helping CRITICAL to kit out its volunteers so they can continue their life saving work.”
Registration is now open, to sign up for your chosen location visit https://bikeandhike.criticalcharity.ie/