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Mercedes-Benz joins fundraising cycle for children’s charities

Latest News

Mercedes-Benz joins fundraising cycle for children’s charities

It was after Berrick Wilson’s two-day-old daughter Milla was rushed to hospital with a brain haemorrhage in 2007 that the Melbourne man realised he needed to do something to help others in the same predicament. While Milla made a full recovery, Wilson – who is now a partner with consultancy firm KordaMentha – set about creating a cycling-based charity called Chain Reaction, designed to allow people in a similar position to himself to assist. “It was obvious that even in Australia’s major capital cities, more can be done to help sick children,” Wilson says. 

With its key activities described as ‘the ultimate corporate bike challenge’, the Chain Reaction Challenge Foundation has raised $19.2 million since its first ride 2007. It continues to organise numerous long-distance cycling events each year aimed at corporate fitness enthusiasts keen to raise funds for children’s charities.

Mercedes-Benz Australia has announced it will provide key logistical assistance to Chain Reaction by supplying a fleet of vehicles to support its multi-day bike rides, which are set to raise millions of dollars for a variety of charities assisting children with serious medical issues.

Among the many previous beneficiaries of funds raised by Chain Reaction cycling events are children’s neurological disorder charity Brainwave, which is also supported directly by Mercedes-Benz Australia, as well as the Starlight Foundation and Very Special Kids. In 2016, Chain Reaction donated 75 per cent of every dollar raised to its children’s charity partners. In return for the physical challenge of a fully-supported cycling event, participants commit to a fundraising goal to support their entry. During cycling events in 2017 and 2018, Mercedes-Benz Australia will become the Official Vehicle of Chain Reaction, supplying a total of six cars and vans that will perform duties including leading the cycling peleton, providing medical support, and various logistical services.

Mercedes-Benz Australia CEO and Managing Director Horst von Sanden says Chain Reaction has a proven record of providing much-needed funding to help support children with serious medical issues. “Working with Chain Reaction is an extension of the support for children that Mercedes-Benz already provides to Brainwave. We understand that Chain Reaction helped to pay for Brainwave’s recent Christmas party for its clients, which only proves their dedication to helping children facing serious medical issues and their families,” he said.

Chain Reaction will embark on four bike rides in 2017. The first, from March 11 to 17, covers 1025km on selected stages between Sydney and Brisbane. One week later, on March 25, a 957km, seven-day route begins in Auckland and tours New Zealand’s North Island.