Written by Michelle Beaven
Mt Helena resident Ben Ward is setting off on a fundraising venture which will see him riding a postie bike along the Gibb River Rd.
The married father of two will be leaving Sonny, 4, and Kit, 1, in the capable hands of my wife Nici while he embarks on the trip which is expected to take about eight or nine days.
The 6th Bright Blue Gibb River Postie Bike Ride is an adventure with a difference, with riders using Australia Post postie bikes to complete the trip.
The ride takes in epic scenery of the Kimberley, whilst negotiating creek crossings, unsealed roads and sleeping under the stars.
This year, due to popular demand, there will be two trips across the Gibb River Rd starting next month.
Mr Ward said he managed to get a postie bike from a family friend in Stoneville for training purposes in exchange for a carton of beer.
It costs $1500 a rider and each rider must fundraise at least $4000 for Bright Blue.
All fundraising must be logged at the everydayhero page.
The registration fee includes a postie bike for the duration of the trip, a fight from Perth to Broome (1st leg) or Kununurra (2nd leg), a tent, all camping fees and all meals.
He has since sold the bike for $900 with the money going back to the charity.
“The money raised from this event will go directly to Bright Blue projects which includes supporting brain cancer research,” Mr Ward said.
“I have two healthy boys and can’t help but imagine what people go through when their children have health issues,” he said.
“I am more than happy to put my hand in my pocket for sick kids, the research and development needed to ensure we’re heading in the right direction.
“On average, three Australian children die from cancer each week, and I thought Bright Blue would be a great cause to get behind.”
The Bright Blue Commissioner’s Fund for Sick Kids is a not for profit, independent organisation creating a force for a brighter future for sick children and their families in Western Australia.
The charity aims to help in the prevention and treatment of childhood illnesses, particularly those linked to issues police officers see every day.
This includes the abuse of drugs and alcohol, as well as social disadvantage.
Bright Blue achieves this by providing unwavering support to individuals through its causes, as well as to nominated organisations in their fight against these illnesses and disadvantage, with an emphasis on helping those with limited access to funding.
Mr Ward said he saw the challenge on facebook and couldn’t resist.
“I went around Australia with Nici before the boys were born and we skipped the Gibb River Rd which I really regret,” he said.
“I got my bike licence when I lived in Melbourne and I had planned a trip around Tasmania with two mate of mine when we heard our first-born Sonny was on the way.
“So I sold that bike to focus on being a dad, but my boys are now old enough for me to take on the challenge.
“I know money is hard to come by these days, so every dollar will be greatly appreciated.
“I promise to reward you with great photos of the trip, $4000 is a lot to ask, so get donating people.”