With over 70% of urban South Africans living in townships, it is vital that these areas are targeted with increased resources in order to make lasting change.  Rays of Hope is a public benefit organization working hands on in the  heart of Alexandra Township in northern Johannesburg, partnering with its residents and undertaking various community-based projects that focus primarily on orphaned and vulnerable children, education and work readiness.  And the organization is calling on you to take part in this year’s 947 Cycle Challenge as part of the Rays of Hope team in order to make even more of a difference to the lives and futures of Alex’s people

Under the banner of Hope on Wheels, the Rays of Hope cycle team aims to raise funds to further enhance and grow its projects to create meaningful impact in the lives of those living in Alex.  By joining the Rays of Hope Team, each rider commits to purchasing a team shirt and to raising R3000-00 by 30 November 2017.  Benefits for riders include a goodie bag, optional dedicated charity start time, pre- and post-cycle parties, race pack collection and en-route supporters zone and water point. The Cycle Challenge takes place on Sunday, 19 November 2017 at Riversands Commercial Park, and will be preceded by the Mountain Bike Challenge 10km ride on Saturday, 11 November 2017, and the 25km and 55km mountain bike rides on Sunday 12 November 2017.  Team registration closes on 30 August 2017.

By choosing to ride for the Rays of Hope Team, you would be riding with a purpose – one of assisting to create lasting change for people living in Alex, through contributions to its various projects. Rays of Hope provides home-based care to many sick residents, particularly HIV/AIDS patients, in the form of advice, comfort and spiritual support, as well as assisting with food, clothing and household equipment.  Added to this, Rays of Hope assists grandmothers (the often-unsung heroes) within the community, by coming alongside them to provide support as they often look after their grandchildren and even great grandchildren, many of whom have been left without parents due to the Aids pandemic. The organization also works to nurture, educate, guide and help Alex’s orphaned and vulnerable children through a holistic program including home visits, mentoring, material assistance and other targeted support. Their foster care program provides a loving and nurturing family environment for children who are unable to live with their biological relatives.

In terms of education, Rays of Hope helps in numerous ways from teaching English and Mathematics to 250 students between Grades 4 and 9, to creating an environment for an after school homework club where children can ask questions and learn in a non-threatening, fun and loving environment.  

They are also taught computer skills, life skills (such as washing, cooking, personal hygiene, and cleaning) and gardening. A number of children with learning difficulties are sponsored to attend a specialist school where they can receive the remedial help they need. In terms of work readiness, one of Rays of Hope’s programmes work with young people in Matric and entering into the tertiary arena, providing them with mentoring and the skills to cope with higher studies. Another project works with unemployed young men and women to assist them with necessary skills and confidence to approach the work place.

Become a Hope on Wheels Ambassador and know that your efforts and contribution are helping to effect lasting change in the lives of ordinary South Africans.