Ramesh rides for retinal research

01 December 17

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Press Office

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Last month saw the end of an epic adventure to fundraise for Fight for Sight. Ramesh Devalia, from Leicester, undertook the challenge of cycling 350 kilometres across the breadth of Cuba to fundraise for the charity, which funds vital eye research.

Ramesh’s ride has so far raised in excess of £4000 and was inspired by his experience with retinal detachment. Ramesh explains: “In 2012 the retina in my right eye got detached. It seemed to be a routine procedure to reattach it but it does carry small risks. My own experience with the operation has left me in awe and made me realise that this surgery has been made possible as a result of extensive research to advance the field.”

Setting himself a fundraising target of £3300 – which he has now exceeded – and a training target, Ramesh started preparation earlier this year to build up his stamina. Ramesh added his reasons for choosing this challenge: “It has been my long time desire to visit Cuba and I didn’t want to do so just as a tourist but wanted to experience the real Cuba - what better way to do this than by cycling through the country and absorbing the geography, the history, the weather and the customs of the people.”

He went on to urge others to undertake their own challenges: “Everyone should undertake such a challenge once in their lifetime. There are no restrictions on age, anyone can do it – you’re never too old! I thought at 62 I would be the oldest but there was a lady on the challenge who did extremely well and she was over 70 years old.”

Ramesh is now keen to continue cycling and fundraising and has signed up to raise money for more research with the London to Paris ride taking place in June next year.

Although the Cuba ride has taken place, you can still make a donation with funds going to support Fight for Sight:

If you are interested in taking part in a Fight for Sight fundraising event, please visit: https://www.fightforsight.org.uk/get-involved/fundraise-for-us/

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Notes for editors:
Ramesh Devalia’s Cuba cycle ride took place from 21 to 29 October 2017. 

Fight for Sight is the leading UK charity dedicated to funding pioneering research to prevent sight loss and treat eye disease.

Fight for Sight’s overall research commitments amount to £8m for over 159 research projects at 44 different universities and hospitals across the UK.

Fight for Sight is funding research to stop sight loss caused by both common and rare eye diseases and conditions. These include age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, inherited eye diseases and the causes of childhood sight loss. Research that has been funded by Fight for Sight has resulted in:
• the identification of new genes responsible for glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa, keratoconus and other corneal disorders, and Nance-Horan syndrome
• the world’s first clinical trial of a treatment (a gene therapy) for choroideremia, an inherited condition that causes blindness in men
• the design of a new test that can detect the early stages of sight loss in age-related macular degeneration

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