A BIKER has raised £12,000 for Ukraine by donating a motorbike he owned since he was 18.

Malcolm Rivers, from Shepton Beauchamp, selflessly donated his “pride and joy” motorbike, a classic Kawasaki KZ100 to a Yeovil online competitions site, Aspire Competitions, which regularly gives away motors worth tens of thousands of pounds.

Malcolm approached the company himself and proposed his plan to enter his bike into the weekly live draw and to donate the entirety of the proceeds to the Ukraine cause.

The motorbike that Malcolm has adored for so many years has now been won by an RAF helicopter pilot, soon to be deployed to Eastern Europe and Ukraine in what was seen as “a strange coincidence”.

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Malcolm's Kawasaki KZ100

Through Aspire Competitions, Malcolm’s fundraiser also helped Gareth Witt who is a family friend of one of the company’s directors now helping people in Ukraine.

Gareth is an ex-Royal Marine who heard the news of the invasion and immediately flew himself to Ukraine to do what he could to help the people of Ukraine in a bid to spread awareness and raise funds for this devastating event.

When Malcolm's bike was entered into the week's competition draw, Aspire Competitions was amazed by the outpouring of generosity from customers across the nation and who rallied together, giving as much money as possible to support Gareth’s efforts in Ukraine.

As a result, the entire team managed to raise a whopping £11,785, which was then amazingly topped up to £12,000 by Aspire Competitions.

The whole amount was donated to Gareth who has distributed it directly to those most vulnerable in Ukraine.

He said: “I had to do something. As an 18-year-old I had so many fantastic, carefree times on it and 40 years later, I could do it all again.”

Malcolm also added that “there are 18-year-old men fighting in Ukraine, who won’t get those 40 years that I had”.

Prior to the main event, Malcolm had already researched Gareth and was made aware of his work in Ukraine.

To date, Gareth has been involved in preventing horrific situations such as human trafficking and transferring women and children across the borders, not knowing whether they will arrive in a safe environment or ever see their loved ones again.

He has also been fundamental in providing supplies and food to as many people as possible, each act testing his physical and mental abilities, reminding him of the severity of this dire situation.

With the help of other donations coming from different competitions, the total amount raised to help the Ukrainian cause reached £13,000.

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