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On Saturday 24th August, Care for the Carers’ Jennifer Twist set off from Bexhill to take on her fundraising challenge – cycling from East Sussex to Paris, to celebrate the charity’s 30th Anniversary and in memory of her father Keith Twist.

Jennifer was cheered on her way by friends and family, including Ray Konyn of the Classic Cycle Group who came along for the first leg of the ride on his superb classic bike. Over three days Jennifer cycled from Bexhill to Newhaven, Dieppe to Beauvais and then on to Paris, arriving in the capital on Bank Holiday Monday.

The gruelling 3-day ride involved many challenging hills, a detour (adding extra miles) to replace a broken wheel, two punctures, and cycling for hours in the stifling heat – all to help ensure that no one is left to care alone. “I had no idea how hilly the North of France was,” said Jennifer, who pedalled 161 miles to get to the French capital, “and I definitely should have planned a more direct route!”

So far Jennifer has raised an amazing £1,042 for Care for the Carers, which will go towards vital services for local carers. She says, “I was very nervous about taking on this challenge, it’s been a while since I’ve gone on any long bike rides! But I was determined to do it. I wanted to do something really special for our 30th Anniversary year, helping to raise awareness of the 67,000 plus unpaid carers that live in East Sussex.

The number of local people looking after a relative or friend continues to grow, and they are dealing with increasingly complex issues. I hope this challenge has helped more people learn about caring, and that Care for the Carers is here to support them.

I was relieved to get to the finish, and would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported me – it meant a great deal.”

Jennifer would still love your support, you can donate to the challenge at www.cftc.org.uk/pedalparis

You can also learn more about the journey on Twitter: @jennifer_twist


· Care for the Carers is the Carers Centre for East Sussex and an independent charity supporting unpaid carers across the county. The charity provides free practical and emotional advice and a range of services such as counselling, support groups and training. www.cftc.org.uk. Call 01323 738390 or email info@cftc.org.uk

· Who are carers? A carer is someone who provides unpaid care and support to a family member or friend who has a disability, illness, mental health problem or who needs extra help as they grow older.

· Care for the Carers wants to do more to help carers in East Sussex through raising awareness, fundraising and volunteering. We want to ensure than no one is left to care alone. Can you help? www.cftc.org.uk

· *Estimated total amount of unpaid carers in East Sussex in 2018 is 66,269. Figures calculated by Care for the Carers based on projected growth from 2011 UK census figures:

- Eastbourne: 11,988

- Hastings: 10,030

- Lewes: 13,027

- Rother: 12,675

- Wealden: 18,549