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Ride For Hope
The plight of asylum seekers and displaced peoples around the world isn't a new problem, but it's certainly more visible than ever before. With globalisation, the internet and the saturation of 24/7 news services, it's easy to see this as just a sign of the times, and believe that "there's always one group of people who will be suffering somewhere in the world."
Tackling the issue head-on is something that many see as the responsibility of governments at an international level, and it's quite common for people to believe that they themselves can't have any meaningful role in the improvement of refugee welfare.
Ride For Refugees is a charity event where entrants will raise funds by pledging to ride a distance that they set themselves. Choose from 25, 50, 75 or 100 kilometres.
You can take part either by yourself, or as part of a team. There'll be separate routes for kids and adults, and parents will need to make sure their children are supervised while they ride (the children's route is only 1.2 kilometres, and there will be a grassed area for the parents to sit and watch).
The adult's route is a 25 kilometre circuit taking riders from Albert Bishop Park to the Boondall Wetlands Park and back, via the Jim Soorley and Boondall Wetlands cycleways. Depending on what total distance you've pledged to ride, you then just repeat the 25 kilometre route to make up your kilometres.
Once riders reach the halfway point at Boondall Wetlands, they'll be able to take advantage of the toilets as well as free refreshments. If you've got a flat or a slipped chain, never fear as there will be volunteers on hand to get you running again.
As a general idea of how long the different distances take, allow 1-1.5 hours for 25kms, 2-3 hours for 50kms, 3-5 hours for 75kms, and 3-6 hours for 100kms.
Preparing for the event
Assess your fitness. Be optimistic about how far you'd like to ride, but set a realistic target.
Take a look at your bike if you haven't ridden it in a while. Do you still have a helmet that fits?
(Lycra is optional, whatever works for the look you're going for).
Lastly, visit the Ride for Refugees website and sign up. Once you're registered, you'll be able to create an entrant profile and share this to your social accounts to start the ball rolling with your fundraising.
If you need any more information on this or future Ride for Refugee events, visit their website.
Getting there on the day
The most important consideration is of course a mode of transport that's bike-friendly; if you don't have access to a vehicle with roof racks, then check Translink's journey planner to see if there is a train service that could work for you. Albert Bishop Park is roughly equidistant between Nundah and Toombul stations, but alighting at Nundah will mean less cycling on main roads to reach the event. It's not likely to be too crowded on the trains on Saturday morning and Queensland Rail does allow bikes to be taken onboard outside of the weekday peak services, but try to board towards the rear carriages where possible.
If you get off at Nundah, ride up past the shopping centre, turn left, then turn right at Hedley Avenue and continue to the park.
If you do drive to the event, there will be plenty of parking in the surrounding streets.