Ride For Unity 2015

Our inaugural Ride For Unity launched on the 24thof August this year with a team of 15 enthusiastic cyclists and a dedicated support crew heading out from the town of Port Hedland in W.A’s far north west with nearly 600kms in their sights. The IF Foundation’s Ride For Unity aimed to bring awareness to the issues surrounding the social and emotional impact of violence and anti-social behaviour in our communities whilst raising money for our community based programs: Mum’s and Bubs, The Performing Arts Academy and our Head-start Fathering Initiative.

It was an incredible journey that proved equally challenging and rewarding but the courage and resilience of the team to make it to the end only helped to reinforce the message that tackling this issue is a community responsibility and we can all do something to take a stand if we work together.

There were many highlights along the way. Despite tired and weary legs, on our first night camping at The Whim Creek Hotel after a long day on the road, the cyclists and crew got a little taste of what we do by spending some time with our facilitators and taking part in some workshop activities during the evening. The activities were a great way not only for the team to connect at the start of the journey but also to develop a greater understanding of what it might be like to stand in the shoes of young people who are affected by these issues and why it is these behaviours occur in our communities. As the ride continued there was never a dull moment whilst traveling through the Pilbara – tyre punctures, heat, aches and pains, road trains, road works, bike repairs, dinners by the camp fire and plenty of laughs and practical jokes – all the while receiving an incredible amount of support and generosity in each town along the way.

 

       

Roebourne School Assembly
Roebourne School Assembly

There were many highlights along the way. Despite tired and weary legs, on our first night camping at The Whim Creek Hotel after a long day on the road, the cyclists and crew got a little taste of what we do by spending some time with our facilitators and taking part in some workshop activities during the evening. The activities were a great way not only for the team to connect at the start of the journey but also to develop a greater understanding of what it might be like to stand in the shoes of young people who are affected by these issues and why it is these behaviours occur in our communities. As the ride continued there was never a dull moment whilst traveling through the Pilbara – tyre punctures, heat, aches and pains, road trains, road works, bike repairs, dinners by the camp fire and plenty of laughs and practical jokes – all the while receiving an incredible amount of support and generosity in each town along the way.

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Our facilitators also spent time in schools during the week in Roebourne, Karratha and Onslow conducting workshops and short performances around the themes of “Me Know Bully” and “Love The Skin You’re In”. Roebourne District High school also received an extra special delivery of 12 standing desks which were generously donated by the IF Foundation and Up Standing Kids. They will be amongst one of the first schools in Australia to trial the desks that will hopefully offer not only physical benefits to the students but also assist in strengthening focus and concentration in the classroom.

The unity amongst the team was strong and cyclists arrived in Onslow ahead of schedule on the 28th August to a warm and welcoming response from the community who were there to cheer our team in at the end of a long journey. We finished off with a great night at the Onslow Sports Club hosted by one of our cyclists Scott Cummings and joined by many members of the community. Our first year of the Ride For Unity has proven a great success and most importantly has been instrumental in raising he profile of the impact of violence across Australia. Thank you to all of our sponsors and supporters, the generous donations and words of encouragement along the way. Together we can make a difference.