The official launch of the Walking the Amazon expedition which is supporting The ME Association's UK tissue bank project will be held in London on Saturday, 2 February – when The MEA joins up with Project Peru for a £50-a-head champagne reception and supper on board HMS President, the Anchusa class corvette moored right in the heart of the City of London.
With music from Manteca – featuring Martha Acosts and Argentinean bassist Don Flora (and a line-up of saxophones, trumpet, percussion and keyboards) – this will be a lively send-off for Ed Stafford and Luke Collyer, the intrepid duo who leave for South America in March to take on the world's longest river.
They will walk from the source of the Amazon in southern Peru to its mouth in Brazil in a wholly unsupported and uninterrupted trek which will take up to two years. On the way, they aim to raise awareness of climate change by collecting and broadcasting the experiences of the Amazonian people who live and work in the Andean mountains and the Amazon rainforest.
By way of warm-up, they will be walking the Thames from its source to its mouth soon after Christmas. At 215 miles, it should be a doddle!
Besides The MEA's tissue bank project and Project Peru, the expedition also supports the work of four other British and South American charities – Rainforest Concern, The ABC Trust, Cancer Research UK and the National Outward Bound Trust.
If you'd like to come to the party on February 2, please contact Ba Stafford, tel: 01225 423 739 or write to Mrs B Stafford, Fernside, Deadmill Lane, Lower Swainswick, Bath BA1 8DE. Cheques to be made payable to "From Thames to Amazon".