At just 20 years old Angelina Roan cycled through Stawell on Thursday as she completes her 805 kilometer journey from Adelaide to Melbourne.
Ms Roan is cycling to raise awareness and help reduce homophobic behaviour among youth in sport.
She said at just 13 years old she watched as her sister experienced negativity from both her family and society during the ‘coming out’ period.
“It dawned on me that others also had to endure similar experiences at both the familial and societal level for simply being who they are,” she said.
But Ms Roan said she is still frustrated by seeing today’s society “plagued” with issues of homophobia.
“I became involved with Stand-Up Events and now seek to unite my passions for cycling and equality and diversity by creating Good Wheel Hunting,” she said.
“And so far the support has been overwhelming – the response I have received has been incredible.”
Ms Roan was on her fourth day of cycling when she rode into Stawell.
She said the journey had gone “smoothly” so far.
“I have even had some people cook me dinner and breakfast at the places I have past,” she said.
“It has been amazing to see how open-minded people are about this issue – it puts my faith back into society.”
Ms Roan has raised about $4000 and aims to raise $50,000, all of which will go to Stand Up Events, a Melbourne based not-for-profit organisation.
She said Stand Up Events would use the money to undertake unprecedented research with Monash University to create national programs aimed at reducing homophobic behaviour amongst youth in sport, with the goal of implementing these programs globally.
“I love cycling and am passionate about this issue and I think it was meant to be that I got here to this stage and can now spread the message to a wider audience,” Ms Roan said.
“I believe what I am apart of in tackling homophobic behaviour in youth will work to change the societal landscape and foster a more equal society.”