The money raised will help transform the lives of Australia’s country kids by providing vital health and developmental services to children living in rural and remote communities.
The ride took the team of cyclists through the stunning Snowy Mountains, from Cooma to Lake Hume Village, with stops in Thredbo and Tumbarumba. Snowy Monaro Regional Council Mayor Narelle Davis and RFW’s CEO Jacqui Emery did the honours early on Sunday morning to officially cut the ribbon and wave the riders off on their epic journey.
The final stretch of the ride, was also for many riders one of more emotional highlights – meeting up at the wonderful All Saints Primary school in Tumbarumba for a wondeful breakfast put on by the Lions Club. It was a brilliant opportunity for the kids and riders to interact. All Saints Primary, as well as other schools in the local area have been in partnership with Royal Far West for many years. It was truly a fantastic moment to see kids line up to provide a magnificent, loud and very enthusiastic All Saints’ Guard of Honour to set the riders on their way.
Jacqui Emery, RFW CEO said” “We are so proud of our riders for accomplishing this challenge and for all the time and dedication they have put towards not only training, but to raising funds and awareness for our mission. These funds will help us continue to provide important allied health services to communities who need it most.”
She goes on to say “Country communities have been affected by countless natural disasters over the last few years. When you couple this with already limited services it has a roll-on effect to everyone especially the children. We are seeing an increased need for developmental and mental health services in rural and remote regions. These vital funds can help us continue to grow and deliver these services”, continued Ms Emery.
Australian cyclist and Ride for Country Kids ambassador Mark Renshaw, says that knowing the impact this ride has makes every kilometre worth it.
Fellow ambassador and Australia’s most decorated Winter Paralympian, Michael Milton, made his ride debut this year and said that meeting the locals and hearing the impact RFW has first-hand was incredible.
Michael said “what an incredible ride, it was amazing to see this team of riders come together over the 3 days. We were united and determined in our shared passions for raising money for RFW and riding bikes. It was a challenging ride but I’m proud that we all came home safely and we are all so inspired by the RFW’s work for country kids”.
David Sharp , CFO and cyclist at Richard Crookes Constructions, who are one of the Ride’s sponsors said “The Ride this year was by far and away the biggest challenge I’ve ever taken on. I really liked being part of this whole community. What the RFW is doing for the community is just amazing, all the parents we’ve heard speak and just seeing what an amazing impact it has in the community is unreal”.
All funds raised from the Ride for Country Kids will go towards RFW’s work in connecting country kids with complex, undiagnosed developmental and mental health needs to the critical assessments, services and support to help them thrive.
Since its inception nine years ago, the Ride for Country Kids has raised over $3 million for kids and their families.
2023 Ride for Country Kids wrap up
Highlights of the Ride
What motivates our riders to put their bodies on the line and raise funds for country kids? Watch our highlight video to find out