Australia’s premier charity event for the prevention of youth suicide and depression recently held the launch event for 2023 and was attended by 165 riders. This year the Hawaiian Ride for Youth has already raised over $60 000. Next year, this iconic event will be held from 21-25 March. The riders will cover over 700kms on their way from Albany to Perth. While cycling through towns in WA’s Southwest, Great Southern and Wheatbelt the riders visit high schools to engage with students on issues of youth suicide, depression, anxiety and self-harm. The purpose of the Hawaiian Ride for Youth is to raise funds to support Youth Focus’ Youth Mental Health services and the vision of the Hawaiian Ride for Youth is to remove the stigma associated with mental health.
The Hawaiian Ride for Youth continues to break new ground 20 years on, fundraising a record $3 million in its anniversary year. At the end of Ride Week in March 2022, Christina Matthews, Chair of the Hawaiian Ride for Youth Organising Committee, announced that the Hawaiian Ride for Youth had raised a record $2.9 million. “In 20 years, this iconic event has grown from 24 riders who raised $150,000 in 2003, to Australia’s largest, most successful event for the prevention of youth suicide, raising millions of dollars each year,” Ms Matthews said.
Youth Focus offers face-to-face counselling and other life-changing mental health services to young people aged 12 to 25 and their families, at no cost to them. Rider number one, Wayne Bradshaw and CEO of WestCycle said that from humble beginnings 20 years ago to raise $3 million is incredible. In 2002, Wayne was among the group of dads who decided to transform their pastime of cycling for fitness into a charity event to support young people. “It is testament to a wonderful group of riders and their supporters that over $29 million has been raised over 20 years to help our youth,” Mr Bradshaw said.
The WestCycle connection with RFY doesn’t end there as all riders benefit from an annual WestCycle Ride Premium Membership as part of their registration. Membership includes rider insurance, membership of PBF Australia and a range of member benefits and discounts. For more information about the ride please visit www.rideforyouth.com.au or contact the Ride admin team on [email protected] or Phone: (08) 6266 4333
‘Drive (and ride) So Others Survive’: Share our paths and roads and save lives
Op-ed by WestCycle CEO Wayne Bradshaw