A group of 12 vets will motorbike from the UK to St Petersburg — and back — in July to raise funds for horses and donkeys in Gambia.

They plan to complete the 2,700 mile round trip in 16 days and raise more than £100,000.

This will be the 4th charity venture for “Vets with Horsepower”, which has already raised some £280,000 to support working horses in the developing world.

Half of the money will go towards a new urban educational and clinical centre catering for horses and donkeys in Gambia — one of the poorest countries in the world, with little access to veterinary care.

Gambians rely heavily on their horses and donkeys

Gambians rely heavily on their horses and donkeys

The vets are aiming to raise £50,000 towards this Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust project, which will bring significant benefits to both the local community and the working animals on whom the Gambians rely so heavily.

The team of 12 bikers and three support members will combine their endurance test with 9 days of development training for up to 600 practising vets at veterinary schools in 8 countries en route to and from St Petersburg.

“It’s an almost impossible task we have set ourselves, but we are willing to be pushed to the limit in what is a remarkable cause,” said Professor Derek Knottenbelt on behalf of the Horsepower team.

Together we can make a real difference to some of the poorest and most forgotten animals and people in the world.”

Funds will also go towards the work of The Smile Train in India, a charity providing cleft palate operations.

To donate, visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/vetswithhorsepower and you can follow their progress at www.facebook.com/VwHPCPD?fref=ts

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