Northampton cricket-mad Clive faces Africa test

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A Northampton businessman is returning to east Africa, to lead a team of charity volunteers, to help residents cope with the effects of civil war - using cricket.

Clive Hawthorn, Head of Managed Services at Imperial Business Processing Unit,is returning to Rwanda in February to help deliver health messages and support communities.

Previously, Clive, a keen cricketer and an active volunteer for the Cricket Without Boundaries (CWB) charity, volunteered at projects in Kenya, Cameroon and Uganda.

He will be leading a team of nine volunteers from the UK who will be visiting schools, community groups and orphanages around Kigali, the country’s capital, as well as more remote rural areas.

CWB supports people living in sub-Saharan Africa with volunteers helping to improve awareness and social values in communities.

Clive said: “Although emotionally and physically challenging in absolutely every respect, Cricket Without Boundaries’ unique voluntary programmes are hugely beneficial for the communities we visit and provide a real sense of fulfilment for volunteers like myself.

“The programmes really do bring home the fragility of human life and the extreme vulnerability of young people in areas of severe social and economic deprivation.

“More importantly, I know from first hand experience just what a difference we are making and we’re indebted to everyone who contributes to the fundraising that covers the cost of each volunteer’s participation.”

Over the fortnight, the project will include coaching sessions and visits to schools as well as special festivals where children will be invited to take part.

Clive has arranged for health agencies to set up a simple HIV testing station at each festival to provide participants with the opportunity to be tested for the life-threatening infection.

More information on the Cricket Without Boundaries charity can be found at www.cricketwithoutboundaries.com.

Anyone wishing to donate to Clive’s cricket based Rwanda mission please visit his fundraising page on Virgin Money Giving http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/CliveHawthorn