Manchester Irish Doctor to Cycle around the World to raise funds for Mental Health

Manchester Irish Festival 2019

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On the 9th February 2019, Dr Mike Nally, a 26-year-old Junior Doctor from Manchester will be packing his Tri-Colour Flag and his Irish Passport to take on a grueling 19,000 around the world charity cycle challenge which he hopes to complete in 8 months.

The Junior Doctor is currently working in Brighton but he was Born and bred in the mighty Manchester (United), the ardent United supporter was even the Head Ball Boy at Old Trafford in his youth under the guidance of the inspirational Sir Alex Ferguson, whilst he was a student at St Bede's College. His Irish roots stem from Crossmolina in County Mayo where his mother was born.

On Saturday 9th February 2019, Dr Mike Nally, a 26-year-old Junior Doctor from Manchester will be packing his Mayo Flag and his Irish Passport to take on a grueling 19,000 around the world charity cycle challenge which he hopes to complete in 8 months.

The junior doctor is taking the round-the-world cycle trip, turning an 8-month career break into an extreme challenge in support of medical colleagues under pressure.

26-year-old Michael Nally, AKA “Dr Mike on a Bike”, plans to ride through 22 countries as he circumnavigates the globe to raise money for charities the Royal Medical Benevolent Fund (RMBF) and Mind.

Dr Mike aims to raise £20,000 for the charities while spotlighting the pressure that doctors face at work, and the high incidence of mental health issues in the profession. The suicide rate amongst doctors is double that of the general population, and this sobering statistic was a key reason that Dr Mike decided to take on this grueling challenge in support of his colleagues.

Dr Mike says:
“When I was a foundation doctor, my friend told me about his colleague, also a junior doctor, who sadly took their own life. For me, this raised a lot of questions about what was happening in the system for doctors to feel that low.

“I then read about Sophie Spooner, a pediatric trainee who tragically took her own life after experiencing mental health problems. Her mother explained that Sophie had struggled to find a mental health service that would have understood her problem in the context of being a doctor, and that if she'd had the right help, she would still be here. The story had a profound effect on me.

“My goal is to raise money and awareness for the increasing numbers of doctors under stress and pressure. There are so many positives to being a doctor, and being the person people turn to when they need mending. I want people to know that sometimes doctors need mending too, and if just one doctor can get some help as a result of me cycling round the world it will be worth it.

On 9 February, Dr Mike is set to hang up his scrubs and stethoscope and don his lycra, setting off from Buckingham Palace for the first leg of the trip which will take him through Europe to Istanbul. Cycling 80 to 110 miles a day, he will go on to navigate the Indian coast, through Myanmar and Malaysia on to Australia and New Zealand. After crossing the Pacific Ocean, Dr Mike will cover around 4,500 miles across the US and Canada, before returning to London via Portugal, Spain and France. Two close friends, Charlie and Will, are set to cycle alongside him for the later stages and provide vital moral support as the journey nears its close.

Supporters will be able to track Mike’s progress through his Facebook, Twitter and Instagram updates, and can donate to help him reach his fundraising goal at www.virginmoneygiving.com/drmikeonabike .

Tony Hennigan from Mayo Manchester commented "I have known Michael since he was born and it is great to see him taking on his challenge for two great charities and I am sure that the Mayo Diaspora around the globe will come out in force to cheer him on and donate to his fund raising. I hope Mayo have finally won the Sam Maguire when he returns."

Steve Crone, Chief Executive of the Royal Medical Benevolent Fund, said:
“It’s a real pleasure to meet a young doctor with so much passion for his chosen profession and such a determination to make things better for his colleagues. By taking on this challenge for the RMBF and Mind, Dr Mike will help us make a real difference to the lives of doctors under pressure. We are extremely grateful for his efforts and excited to be a part of his journey – we can only imagine the stories that he’ll be collecting along the trip. All the best Mike, All the best Mike, and we’ll be with you all the way!”

About Dr Mike
“I am a 26-year-old junior doctor currently working in Brighton. Born and bred in the mighty Manchester (United,) I moved down to London for my studies and have since relocated down to the south coast for the first few years as a doctor.

“The most important thing for you to know about me is that I am in no way a professional athlete. Coming in at 6ft5, weighing more than 100kg and having a lifelong weakness for all things sugar and dough have put paid to any flourishing sporting career. Having said that, I enjoy a game of rugby and have spent plenty of time in the saddle over the years.”

“This challenge will allow me to continue my love affair with cycling and at the same time raise awareness for an issue that I feel very strongly about. I was shocked when I learnt that doctors are twice as likely to commit suicide compared with the general population. Year on year, the number of doctors struggling with anxiety, depression and burnout is growing with little in the way of support on offer. It's my firm belief that without healthy doctors you simply cannot have healthy patients.”
About the charities

The Royal Medical Benevolent Fund is the UK charity for doctors, medical students and their families.
They provide vital financial help to members of the medical profession facing hardship as a result of illness, injury, bereavement or disability.
The majority of the doctors the RMBF helps are, like Dr Mike, under the age of 40 – often those who have not yet had the chance to build up a financial safety net.

They also work with the BMA to provide DocHealth, which offers confidential psychotherapeutic support for all doctors.

Mind provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.
They campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding.
Every year, one in four of us will experience a mental health problem. But hundreds of thousands of people are still struggling.
Mind believes no-one should have to face a mental health problem alone. They will listen, give you support and advice, and fight your corner.

Links
Donate and follow Dr Mike on a Bike
Donate: https://www.virginmoneygiving.com/drmikeonabike
Website: https://www.drmikeonabike.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmikeonabike
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Drmikeonabike
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/drmikeonabike/
The Royal Medical Benevolent Fund
https://rmbf.org/

For further information, contact Sarah Stewart, Head of Fundraising & Communications
Tel: 020 8545 8443 – Email: sstewart@rmbf.org
Mind
https://www.mind.org.uk/
For further information, contact Antonella Vinciguerra
Email: a.vinciguerra@mind.org.uk

The Junior Doctor is currently working in Brighton but he was Born and bred in the mighty Manchester (United), the ardent United supporter was even the Head Ball Boy at Old Trafford in his youth under the guidance of the inspirational Sir Alex Ferguson, whilst he was a student at St Bede's College. His Irish roots stem from Crossmolina in County Mayo where his mother was born.

Mike moved down to London for his studies to become a Doctor and he has since relocated down to the south coast for the first few years as a doctor.

When asked about he felt about his forthcoming challenge Mike replied

"The most important thing for you to know about me is that I am in no way a professional athlete. Coming in at 6ft 5", weighing more than 100kg and having a lifelong weakness for all things sugar and dough have put paid to any flourishing sporting career. Having said that I do enjoy a game of rugby and I have spent plenty of time in the saddle over the years.”

"This challenge will allow me to continue my love affair with cycling and at the same time raise awareness for an issue that I feel very strongly about. I was shocked when I learnt that doctors are twice as likely to commit suicide compared with the general population. Year on year, the number of doctors struggling with anxiety, depression and burnout is growing with little in the way of support on offer. It's my firm belief that without healthy doctors you simply cannot have healthy patients, Happy Doctors make Good Doctors.”

"Hopefully, this challenge will highlight these issues and help improve support for doctors so that they can continue doing what they love, helping others in their time of need."

“I’d like to be a positive voice and champion medicine to young people as a rewarding and fulfilling lifelong career. With your donations, we can ensure that there is a caring profession waiting to support them.”

Tony Hennigan from the Mayo Manchester Tourism and Business group added "I have known Mike all his life, it is great to see him taking on this once in a lifetime challenge for two great causes. I cannot wait to see all his photographs on his journey around the world with his Mayo Flag, I am sure the Mayo diaspora around the world will welcome him with open arms and contribute towards the two charities."

Mike has set himself a £20,000 Target which will be shared between the two charities that he is raising money for which are ‘Mind’ the Mental Health Charity and the Doctors Charity, The Royal Medical Benevolent Fund.

To Donate to the charity, click the link below
https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-display/showROFundraiserPage...

Mike is talking the ride in six different stages the first one is London to Istanbul, then Mumbai to Singapore, then Perth to Sydney, then Queenstown to Auckland, then Los Angeles to New York and finally Lisbon back to London.

To follow his journey you can visit his website www.drmikeonabike.com or follow him on social media on Facebook, Instagram and twitter on drmikeonabike.