HIRO’s Cycling for a Cause

This is the fourth year of the HIRO’s 4 HOPE bike ride and each year the number of cyclists grows and the money raised increases. Over the first two years, the bike ride resulted in the installation of water tanks at the Centre, at the beginning of a period of prolonged drought, then in the second year the purchase of a much needed vehicle and two motos to enable our staff to do essential field trips to visit children and their families. These gifts continue to contribute to our work today.

One of our principal objectives as a Foundation is to help poor and vulnerable children in Battambang to receive an education which will help them, and their families, to support themselves in the future. In 2015 the efforts of the riders, together with the generous support of donors, enabled us to open three pre–school classes for over fifty 3 to 5 year old children. But it is not all about education in these important developmental years in a child’s life – malnutrition at this time can stunt children physically and intellectually. JT Little HIRO’s pre–schoolers will be provided with a nutritious breakfast every day, and for many of them, this will be the best meal they have all day. These children will be well prepared to start government school when they reach 6 years of age and leave our pre – school.

In 2016 we hope that HIRO’s 4 HOPE 2016 will raise money to assist us to maintain and expand our pre – school and enable us to purchase a new moto to replace an older moto. But the main aim of this fundraising effort will be to support our Family Preservation program.

The Family Preservation program is a new program, sponsored by the Cambodian Government, for which Hope and one other NGO in Battambang have been chosen to participate. The program aims to identify ‘at risk’ families which are in danger through poverty, domestic violence or misfortune (such as floods and monsoons) of not being able to survive as a family. Rather than leaving the family to fail the program offers aid to the family so that they can survive and stay together. The aid offered could include food, counselling, temporary accommodation, safe haven or repairs to existing accommodation. This is the new direction in Cambodia, family support rather than institutionalization of children.

The October 2016 bike ride will start from Vientiane in Laos and finish at the HOPE center in Battambang.