Fenland cyclists to tackle 50-mile ride to raise money for abuse support group

SEVEN Fenland cyclists are preparing for a 50-mile ride to raise money for a support group which helps victims of abuse.

Patsy Tobin, from Whittlesey, co-founded the Helping Hands Against Abuse support group earlier this year.

It aims to bring victims of child abuse, domestic violence and abuse of the elderly together in one “cyber-family” to share their “troubles, joys and achievements”.

In five months it has attracted more than 300 members from across the country.

Now Mrs Tobin is hoping it can expand even more, to hold meetings at different locations across Great Britain and continue to fight all forms of abuse.

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The 44-year-old said: “We’ve already got around 300 survivors, who get together and help each other get through the bad days. It’s very important to talk to people who understand what you’ve been through.

“I don’t think people realise how many people are affected by abuse. When I started the group people I had known all my life came forward and said they had suffered.

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“These were people I had grown up with and I had no idea that they had gone through what they had.

“None of us are councillors we are just people who are looking for someone who is going to listen. When you listen to some of the stories, you wonder how people have managed to survive. It can be heartbreaking.”

The group, which has applied to become a charity, is run in partnership with independent film-maker Pie and Mash Films, which produces short documentaries to raise awareness of abuse.

Mrs Tobin’s husband Michael and six other family friends are spearheading the group’s fundraising efforts with a sponsored bike ride from Whittlesey to Huntingdon on Bank Holiday Monday.

To join the ride, or for more information on Helping Hands Against Abuse, visit helpinghandsagainstabuse.weebly.com

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