Scaling a volcano, swimming with sharks and diving with crocodiles – Mike’s doing it all for charity

HIGH POINT: Mike McNally on Mount Rinjani
HIGH POINT: Mike McNally on Mount Rinjani

WHEN it comes to helping out a good cause – it’s not just the sky that’s the limit for a globe-trotting South Tyneside man.

Daredevil Mike McNally has scaled a volcano, swum with sharks, cage dived with crocodiles and taken a leap of faith for a sky dive from 14,000 feet in recent months, all in the name of charity.

The 24-year-old, from Jarrow, set himself a series of daunting challenges in a bid to raise precious cash for Africa on the Ball, a Scottish-based charity using the power of football to help tackle poverty in Zambia.

The charity has established a football club in Kalingalinga which, as well as being about sport, includes a food programme and an education fund.

The project helps to provide regular nutritious meals to the poor, as well as helping team members complete their basic education.

Mr McNally is currently travelling through Australia and decided to create his very own fundraising bucket list to help those less fortunate.

He is aiming to raise £500 to boost the charity’s bid to buy a bus to be used to help transport people in Kalingalinga in Zambia.

He has already raised over £230 through his adreneline-charged efforts.

Mr McNally said: “This all started with a pen and a piece of paper.

“Last year I created a list and put it up on my blog. This list contains all my goals, my fears, my passions… all the things I wanted to do but never thought I could.

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DCIM\100GOPRO

“For the past two years I’ve been working in Australia and after saving up enough money I quit my job, bought a car and am currently travelling around Australia.

“I consider myself to me extremely lucky to be able to travel for this length of time and do all this cool stuff and an idea came to me that I could use my travels to somehow give something back to those who less fortunate than myself.

“I decided to set myself a series of challenges in an attempt to raise £500 to help Africa On The Ball buy a bus for the community of Kalingalinga in Zambia.

“This bus will not only allow the boys, and a future girls’ team the opportunity to travel to away games, but will also act as a social enterprise providing jobs within the community.

I’m a massive Newcastle United fan and football has given me so much joy over the years, I thought it’d be great if I gave something back to the sport that has given me so much.

“I’ve come to realise that we are all so lucky. We have the choice to chase our dreams.

“There’s a massive portion of people who don’t get that opportunity. The people of Kalingalinga dream of basic stuff – like clean water, food, an education, a chance.”

When Mr McNally finally returns to South Tyneside from his travels down under - he plans to stay firmly on the fundraising trail.

He added: “When I return home I plan on walking Hadrian’s Wall path and completing the national three peaks challenge (climbing Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon).

To donate to the cause, visit Mike’s fundraising page at www.sponsorme.co.uk/mikemcnally/the-’buy-a-bus’-dream-(in-aid-of-africa-on-the-ball).aspx

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