Ride for Hope 2013 – Day Three Begins


I’m sitting on my bed thinking about the day ahead. I’ll be joining 20 other cyclists to ride from Katanning to Wagin, a distance of around 55 kilometres. While it may be the shortest ride on the Ride for Hope, throw in a slight head wind, some hills and extreme heat and you have the recipe for a tough day in the saddle.

This will be our third day of cycling. On Monday we left Albany and rode 91 kilometres to Cranbrook. Tuesday saw us riding around 80 kilometres from Cranbrook to Katanning. By the end of the week we will have cycled around 510 kilometres from Perth to Albany.

Our team is working well together with strong riders supporting those who are finding the road a little tougher. In the end we all know that we’re riding for two important causes – Cancer Council Western Australia and SIMaid’s Girls off the Streets.

Girls off the Streets

I’ve chosen to ride for Girls off the Streets this year.

Childhood should be a time of innocence, yet for millions around the world it’s a time of abuse, exploitation and despair. It’s impossible to imagine the horror a young girl experiences when she’s stolen from her home then raped a dozen times a day by different men to make money for someone else.

Human trafficking enslaves about 27 million people around the world. That is more than the population of Australia. Of these modern day slaves the UN estimates 79% of them are caught up in sexual trafficking. According to “Save the Children” at any one time across the world, around 1.8 million children are being abused through prostitution, child pornography and sex tourism.

I took a trip in December last year to Bangladesh and India to see the excellent work being done through SIMaid’s Girls off the Streets. I was so amazed at the work that is being done to bring hope and healing to young women who have been rescued from sex trafficking that I wanted to do more to help shine some light into some very dark corners of our world.

What I saw on my trip was young women, some very young, who had been sexually exploited and sold into prostitution but who are now growing in confidence as they learn to trust again and develop life skills that will give them a strong foundation for life ahead. Girls off the Streets is giving them a future and importantly, letting them know that they are truly loved.

Please consider giving whatever you can. What can you give? Five dollars? Ten dollars? Fifty dollars? The need is desperate and any donation of $2 or more is tax deductible (in Australia).

If you’d like to make a difference in the lives of young girls who desperately need your support, simply visit our fundraising page and choose my name from the drop down menu as the participant you’d like to support.

Let me thank you in anticipation of your support.

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About the author

Rodney Olsen

Rodney is a husband, father, cyclist, blogger and podcaster from Perth Western Australia.

He previously worked in radio for about 25 years but these days he spends his time at Compassion Australia, working towards releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name.

The views he expresses here are his own.

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