Kirkcudbright man prepares for humanitarian mission to West Bank – fifth time he’s asked
A man from Kirkcudbright prepares for a humanitarian mission of a lifetime – the fifth time to ask.
John McIntosh will cycle through the West Bank to Jerusalem next May in support of Palestinian Medical Aid (MAP).
It will be the first time that avid cyclist John, 61, has visited Israeli occupied territory.
His Cycle Palestine trip has already been canceled four times due to the pandemic.
John told the News: âMy goal is Â£ 2,500 which is the minimum set by the charity.
âWe don’t really know what life is like on the pitch, but until we’re out there, we won’t know. “
John’s sister-in-law Anne Bryce and her husband Graham, who also live in Kirkcudbright, did Cycle Palestine in 2015.
And when their son Calum followed suit in 2017, John vowed he would do the same.
âI was a volunteer candidate – the Middle East is part of the world I’ve never been to,â he said. âI attended a MAP briefing in February 2020 just a few weeks before our release.
âIt was before Covid and the trip was canceled, and again last September and March and September of this year.
âNow it’s scheduled for May 2022 and I’ve reactivated my fundraising page. “
John, lead singer for Glasgow-based band The Road, has performed regularly with musical buddies in the city for Palestine.
Together they raised thousands of pounds, including money for Ann and Graham Bryce’s trip in 2015.
He said, âAnne also organized two ‘Come Dine Palestine’ events for me, when people were invited to her home and then to mine, for an evening of Palestinian food, music and dancing.
“They have been very successful and enthusiastically supported by friends and neighbors.”
The 240-kilometer cycle takes place over six days, starting from Jenin in the north.
John will cycle through Hebron, Ramallah and Bethlehem – which is twinned with Glasgow – then until arriving in Jerusalem.
He said: âThe heat can be a bit of a problem – in May it will be the thirties.
âYou worry about the reaction of the Israeli authorities who are in charge.
âThere are no flights allowed in Palestine, so we have to go to Tel Aviv. “
Anyone wishing to sponsor John can visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/john-mcintosh7
All money raised will support MAP’s medical projects supporting Palestinians living under occupation and as refugees.