Tiana gets on her bike for Open Door

Tiana Satsangi has raised money for Open Door.

Tiana Satsangi has raised money for Open Door. - Credit: Open Door

An 11-year-old St Albans schoolgirl jumped on her bike to cycle for a homeless charity.

After reading Onjali Q Raúf’s book ‘The Night Bus Hero', Tiana Satsangi was moved by the true stories about homelessness, and decided to do something to help.

She chose to support Open Door St Albans - the local charity helping those in need of a home, a blanket or just somewhere to go - and despite not being much of a cyclist, decided she was going to ride more than 50 miles (80km) in a month.

Her mum Susan said: "Tiana's enthusiasm for this challenge is unwavering. I thought the additional challenge for her would be getting out of bed early enough to ride the 5km to school but she has been so enthusiastic that she has even managed to take a detour and fit in a few more kilometres along the way. She has cycled every opportunity she can, regardless of the weather, to ensure she keeps ahead of her target."

Open Door's Sarah Chambers and David Lane, Tiana’s sister, Ela, and mum Susan, with Tiana herself.

Open Door publicity and fundraising coordinator Sarah Chambers, chair David Lane, Tiana’s sister, Ela, and mum Susan, with Tiana herself. - Credit: Open Door

Tiana said: "After cycling in rain, through rocky terrain and busy roads, I have completed 84km and raised £480 so far for Open Door St Albans. The rides were easier than I expected but there were definitely some challenges along the way. 

"Thank you to everyone who has donated. Every penny helps. £20 can get breakfast for someone at the shelter for a month, £51 provides a one hour counselling session and £165 will pay for an outreach worker for a day. Awesome!

"I have cycled the furthest I have ever done before in one ride and, as I progress onto 100km, I will keep the homeless of St Albans in my mind. Everyone deserves a home!"

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Open Door publicity and fundraising officer Sarah Chambers said: "When we heard that Tiana had planned a sponsored bike ride to fundraise for us at Open Door, we were thrilled.  It's so important that children have an understanding of homelessness. We hope Tiana is an inspiration to other children to support a cause they feel passionately about. We're very proud of Tiana's dedication."

You can still donate to Tiana's efforts at opendoorstalbans.org/tianas-bike-ride-for-open-door-st-albans/