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Great Sankey High School teacher takes on charity challenge
11:30am Friday 22nd June 2012 in News
MEET the Great Sankey High teacher who took on the Thames during the school holidays.
Ryan Becks paddled his way over 135 miles of the London river in a kayak to raise cash for charity during half-term earlier this month. The 29-year-old PE teacher covered the distance with his 56-year-old dad Adrian in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society, Cancer Research and Compassion UK, charities chosen by his year nine pupils in class 9AB.
He said: “I wanted to pick charities that the pupils would get passionate about supporting so I asked them to present a case for each cause.
“We picked out a top three which all happened to be close to my heart too and then the pupils helped me fundraise and some sponsored me.
“They have been very supportive and a few of my year 11 pupils have said they would now like to do something for charity themselves so hopefully it has given them a nudge in the right direction.”
The challenge was not always plain sailing for the pair as they battled unseasonal stormy conditions in the capital and had to take Adrian to A&E after blisters on his hand became infected.
Covering the length of the non-tidal Thames was scheduled to take three days during the June half-term but due to the weather, the distance was finally completed on the fourth day.
Ryan, who lives in Liverpool, trained for six months before the event with his dad, who lives in Maidenhead, having never covered a long distance in a kayak before.
He added: “It surprised me how difficult it was mentally and physically to keep paddling for such a long time.
“I finished quite sore and stiff but we have managed to raise more than £2,000 which is brilliant.
“I feel proud of the pupils doing something for somebody else.”
To donate, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/RyanBecks.