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Margaret Carey – becoming a charity patron

It is the most amazing compliment to have a charity named after me, and to be invited formally to becomes its Patron. You can read about my background in the about us section, but here is a bit to add to it, the first of a series of blogs.

I’ve always been motivated to work with people whose lives have started badly. One of my first jobs was in what was then referred to as a ‘special school’ for primary age boys from inner London whose behaviour had got them suspended from mainstream education; they were sent to Sussex to try to help them to modify their behaviour. Every single one of them came from a fractured family with little or no care or consistent support. Many years later, I met one of them in a prison. It was almost inevitable, but I felt very sad indeed. He should have been equipped for a better future when we attempted to help him in his early years. I absolutely believe that everyone deserves a positive future, wherever they live in the world and wherever they start.

MCF embodies those principles and brings together so many different people. The bike projects, inside prisons and in the community, bring together the generosity of the public in donating bikes, the skills of instructors to teach people to repair and maintain them, the commitment of people resident in prisons to do work which will build their own skills while, at the same time, providing good quality transport to people on low or no income, and – further afield, in some of the poorest countries in the world – the donation of bikes to communities far away to help children to go to school and adults to go to work.

I am proud and honoured to be Patron of MCF. The charity gives hope to all manner of people. Everyone gains from what it achieves.

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