Our colleague Jaime Lafita, diagnosed with ALS five years ago, recently undertook a long journey by boat and bicycle to Brussels; the goal, to claim more European resources to investigate and counteract the harmful effects of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.
Supported by a team of brave sailors and pedalers from the ‘dalecandELA’ association, they managed to reach Flanders after 9 days of sailing and riding for 1,200 km.
Once there, a manifesto was read in several languages together with representatives of the Parliament present, among them, the Jeltzale MEP Izaskun Bilbao; the Director General of Health of the European Commission, Sandra Gallina, and the medical director of the Basurto hospital, Alejandra Gil.
Upon his return, Jaime was warmly welcomed by his colleagues, who with different actions contribute to make more visible the circumstances of this and other diseases that need more knowledge, understanding and support. The initiative has also been publicized by numerous media.
Five shouts against ALS
The BrusELAs Challenge initiative promoted by Jaime Lafita and ‘DalecandELA’ is part of ‘The Five Shouts to Fight ALS’ promoted by different associations of the state since 2018. The BrusELAs Challenge has been the fourth one promoted by these entities after the expedition ‘ELAntártida’ in 2018 to the highest mountain in Antarctica; the adventure ‘TeidELA’, the ascent in 2020 to the highest mountain in the state (3,718 m), and the most recent expedition of UrriELA on May 31, 2021, in which Miguel Ángel Roldán climbed one of the most emblematic and inaccessible mountains in the state, the Naranjo de Bulnes.
The fifth and final shout is expected to take place this fall, when the three ALS associations will climb ‘Ama Dablam’, considered one of the most beautiful mountains in the world.