Thieves Steal Bike From Lone Aussie Rider
16 August 2016 at 9:18 am
The self-named Lone Aussie Rider who is cycling around Australia in a bid to raise money and awareness for mental health charity beyondblue has had his bike stolen.
Chris Anderson, who embarked on his 20,000 kilometre journey in Frankston in Victoria on 1 May, was camped in Mandurah after an arduous journey across the Nullarbor and the southern half of Western Australia when his bike was taken in the early hours of Monday morning.
Anderson posted on his Facebook page that the bike had been taken from the Mandurah area and put the call out to see if anyone knew of it’s location.
A message from his administration team on Facebook said: “Although he is understandably upset he remains optimistic that the show will go on and is extremely grateful for all the support!”
Despite the theft, Anderson, who is roughly one-quarter of the way through his journey which is expected to take him up to 12 months, said he planned to finish the ride around Australia’s coastline.
Just hours after the theft he was back in the saddle.
Anderson posted his thanks on Facebook to Heavy Hiterz and Canning Bridge cycles who had supplied a new bike.
He said there were “truly amazing people out there”.
“The real Heroes of today need to be recognised. Through the kindness of there [sic] hearts they have helped me out even though I’m supporting a different organisation. That just shows what amazing people are behind #heavyhiterz a charity also working for mental health,” Anderson said.
Anderson hopes to use his feat to change the stigma of mental health.
“Having struggled through depression and being a male, always working on job sites it’s not a subject easily raised,” he said.
“I want to bring awareness and help change it from being such a taboo subject.”
Anderson set himself a goal of raising $20,000 and has so far received nearly $4,000 in donations.
beyondblue CEO Georgie Harman told Pro Bono Australia News the organisation was very grateful to Anderson for helping support the millions of Australians experiencing depression and anxiety, and their families.
“Chris has not only dedicated months of his life in a Herculean effort to cycle around Australia raising funds in support of beyondblue, he has shared his experience of depression to break down stigma associated with this and other mental health conditions,” Harman said.
“Tackling stigma paves the way for more people to seek support when they need.
“We wish Chris the very best luck in retrieving – or at least replacing – his bicycle and continuing on his journey.”
The funds Anderson has raised will help beyondblue continue its work, including offering the free beyondblue Support Service which is available 24/7 by phone on 1300 22 4636, on live web chat (3pm to midnight AEDT) or via email.
People can donate to beyondblue through Anderson’s journey here.