Bradford businessman Modassar Bashir is to cycle from Vietnam to Cambodia to help fund a vital fruit and vegetable farm in Gaza.

Mr Bashir, the director of Anams restaurant in Great Horton Road, will set off on his 500km cycle in January. He is supporting a self-sufficiency project being backed by the Bradford based Human Relief Foundation.

The charity has been helping Palestinians in Gaza since 2002 by delivering aid including medicine, clothing and shelter.

But now it plans to open a 1,000sqm nursery that will generate jobs as well as food.

Mr Bashir hosted a dinner at his restaurant in a bid to help reach his £15,000 target.

Mr Bashir, 32, said: “My training regime is intense but in January, 2011, I will be cycling knowing that every kilometre I cycle I will be creating an opportunity for the less fortunate.

“Before I started training nine months ago I’d never been on a bike. I had to go out and buy one. It’s going to be a case of in at the deep end and then realise how far you can swim – but on dry land.

“There’s about 15 or 20 other people doing it with me from all over the UK and for lots of different charities so I’ll be making lots of good friends on the trip.”

Yousaf Razaq who is HRF’s Project Co-ordinator said most of the fruit and vegetable nurseries in Beit Hanoun were destroyed in 2009 devastating the lives of at least 50 per cent of the residents who relied on agriculture for work.

To sponsor Mr Bashir go to and for information about HRF visit