AN ANTI-SLAVERY campaigner is going the extra mile to in an effort to end the crime in Bolton and abroad.

Susan Banister, from Heaton, the head of business development at Manchester-based charity Hope for Justice, is part of a team if 18 riders taking on a 377km cycling challenge through South-East Asia next month.

Starting from Cambodia's capital Phnom Penh, the riders are aiming to cover 75km every day through sweltering humidity and punishing terrain, as they snake their way down to Ho Chi Minh City in south Vietnam.

The charity has been working in the region for many years, operating from Phnom Penh, and is now looking to expand work into neighbouring Vietnam. There, children are often forced to work underground in gold mines, workers are trapped in debt bondage, and young women are tricked into the sex industry or forced to marry foreigners, Hope for Justice has said.

Working with businesses and people on the ground around the world, Ms Banister is hoping to raise awareness of the issue, which she believes is a concern that many people know little about, and shockingly affects people in Bolton.

She said: "Slavery is a horrific crime, affecting people in the country, and even in Bolton, leaving people without their freedom who are being mentally and physically exploited.

"As a charity we work with businesses looking at slavery in their supply chains, and in the UK we have found that there are many cases of slavery.

"In the last year the UK was the most trafficked nation with an estimated 136,000 people enslaved. It has just exploded."

The mother of two added that trafficking and slavery is growing globally and is now the third largest criminal activity.

Hope for Justice is working to build a growing the alliance of organisations endeavouring to tackle slavery, which already includes big business names such as Aviva and Arriva, as well as smaller companies.

She said: "We are finding victims in legitimate business, high street chains. Traffickers are so clever with how they put people into businesses. So it is about making business owners aware so they can protect their businesses and potential victims from enduring months and months of misery.

"I just want to try and tell as many people about it as we can."

Ms Banister and her team are now hoping to raise more than £10,000 to get their campaign off the ground, and are currently a third of the way there.

To donate visit, or for more information on modern slavery visit